10 terrible decisions made by criminals

Sarah Coles

Films and TV detective series like Columbo would have us believe that criminals are all masterminds, planning elaborate heists, and covering their tracks with great skill.

In the real world, these people do exist. They combine a ruthless disregard for others with a fierce intellect, and cause untold misery through major heists, fraud, hacking, computer viruses and scams.

However, the vast majority of criminals don't fall into this bracket.
Instead of plotting fiendish crimes, a Home Office Study found that almost a third of burglars had fallen into it because they were hanging out with the wrong people, another quarter were funding drug use, and almost a quarter ended up committing crime out of boredom. These are hardly the kinds of motivations that lead to a plan that has been expertly thought through.

It's not known how Nicholas Broadley, a 33-year-old from Goole in East Yorkshire, fell into crime, but last week, he pleaded guilty to another three charges of burglary and one of theft. He didn't really have much choice, given that he was wearing a police GPS tag at the time, putting him at the scene. It also traced him taking some of the bikes he stole to his sister's garden shed - where police found them. Even his barrister described him as "not the sharpest tool in the box'.

However, he is far from alone. Over the years there have been a number of unusual choices made by criminals - from bizarre disguises that didn't pay off, to ill-considered getaway vehicles - which have ultimately led to them being caught. We reveal ten of the more unexpected.

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