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Man stole special edition James Bond books worth nearly £4,000

PUBLISHED: 05:35 15 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:03 15 November 2019

A man has pleaded guilty to stealing five special edition copies of Casino Royale  from a warehouse in Martlesham. Picture: EON PRODUCTION/PA WIRE/DAVID CHESKIN

A man has pleaded guilty to stealing five special edition copies of Casino Royale from a warehouse in Martlesham. Picture: EON PRODUCTION/PA WIRE/DAVID CHESKIN

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An Ipswich man could be jailed after he admitted stealing five rare James Bond books worth £3,750.

Konrad Bulawa, 37, from Station Street, Ipswich admitted to stealing the special editions of Casino Royale, by Ian Fleming, while working for a logistics company in Mendlesham, at Suffolk Magistrates' Court on Thursday, November 14.

The court heard that the company became aware of the thefts after several copies of the book, which had specific serial numbers as well as rare covers and spines, went missing from a pallet in their warehouse on June 4, 2018.

Workers reported seeing items out of place, a loud banging coming from the area of one of the pallets and another one of the books - which was the first James Bond novel written by Fleming in 1953 - put in an area it should not have been.

A security team from the logistics firm looked for the stolen goods online and found two of the special edition Bond books on sale on eBay for their £750 price tag from an account name Bulawa_bulawa.

After approaching the buyer online and confirming that the serial numbers matched two of the books that were stolen, the information was passed to the police - who obtained an address from the account which was handed over by eBay.

Bulawa's name was also associated with the account and after the company confirmed that he worked part-time at the warehouse, a warrant was carried out at his Ipswich home and he was arrested.

None of the books were recovered by the police.

While Bulawa was being interviewed, officers noticed that the adverts had been taken off the internet and, following analysis of his phone, it emerged that his wife Joanna had been involved in planning the sale.

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She was later charged with fraud in relation to the incident but has since left the country without entering a plea.

Konrad Bulawa was charged with the theft of five books and of four counts of fraud by false representation.

He pleaded guilty to theft and two of the fraud charges, with the final two being dismissed after the prosecution chose not to give evidence.

Bulawa will now be sentenced at Ipswich Crown Court at a date to be decided. He was warned at the hearing he could be sent to prison as a consequence of his crimes.

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