Abdulah Husseini has been convicted of one count of theft and four counts of fraud by false representation
A man whose likeness with David Schwimmer’s character Ross from Friends, went viral, has been jailed for a series of thefts and fraud offences.
Abdulah Husseini, 36, described in court as a “travelling, wandering, nomadic thief”, used a stolen bank card to make or attempt to make fraudulent purchases at four shops in Blackpool, Lancashire last September, Burnley crown court heard.
He had walked into an all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant in the resort and stole a wallet from a customer’s jacket while he was away from his table, reports The Guardian.
Shortly after, he began trying to use the card from the wallet and made two successful purchases at nearby stores before CCTV showed him carrying cans of beers to the till at an Iceland store.
A month later police released an image of the alleged thief and people couldn’t help but notice the suspect looked just like Schwimmer’s character on the ’90s sitcom.
The photo was flooded with comments about the man’s resemblance to the Friends actor, with many quoting phrases from the sitcom.
At the time, Schwimmer himself joked about the incident, posting a video of himself carrying a crate of beer and conspicuously looking at the camera. He wrote: Officers, I swear it wasn’t me. As you can see, I was in New York. To the hardworking Blackpool Police, good luck with the investigation. #itwasntme”.
Today (August 15), Husseini was convicted by a jury after a two-day trial of one count of theft and four counts of fraud by false representation.
Husseini has been remanded in custody since he served an 18-week jail term imposed at Wimbledon magistrates court in January for offences of handling stolen goods, theft and possession of a knife.
Judge Dodd told him he “may be released very soon” on licence after he had in effect already served half his nine-month term awaiting the trial.
Earlier this month, it was confirmed that Friends is the most streamed show for the second year running in the UK.