Premier League ticket tout from Wanstead jailed

Tout David Spanton, inset, with some of the tickets, memberships and credit cards police recovered.

Tout David Spanton, inset, with some of the tickets, memberships and credit cards police recovered. Picture: Met Police - Credit: Met Police

A tout, who illegally sold tickets for matches including West Ham United, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, has been jailed.

David Spanton, 47, of Sylvan Road, Wanstead, was sentenced to nine months imprisonment at Southwark Crown Court on Friday, for breaching his Serious Crime Prevention Order (SOPO).

It was issued after a conviction for two money laundering offences in May 2013, which related to large scale ticket touting earning Spanton more than £4million.

The order required Spanton to notify police if he purchases tickets to prevent him re-offending.

Between December 2014 and December 2015 an investigation by the Metropolitan Police found Spanton bought 173 tickets for 24 Premier League matches.

They included West Ham United, Crystal Palace, Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Newcastle.

He took out numerous memberships at these football clubs under false names and aliases, despite many having previously blacklisted him, and bulk bought tickets for each fixture.

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Spanton would sell on the tickets for up to four times their face value.

A tourist from Norway with his family paid £600 for four tickets to see Watford vs Aston Villa in April, which originally cost £40 each.

Evidence was also found that Spanton was involved in secondary ticketing for Wimbledon, UFL, the Chelsea Flower Show and other music events.

Det Sgt Rob Tickle said: “Despite the fact that he was given the freedom and opportunity to change his criminal behaviour, Spanton carried on regardless.

“In fact during a 12-month period Spanton made undeclared credit transfers of more than £67,000 from outside the UK.

“Selling tickets on at inflated prices is not only illegal it prevents the real fans from getting into the ground to enjoy watching their team play.”

Spanton was also sentenced to nine months imprisonment for offending while serving a suspended sentence that arose from similar breaches in 2015. Both sentences are to run concurrently.

A court review will be conducted on the conditions of Spanton’s Serious Crime Prevention Order in September.

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