27 Oct 2011

Cup scalper convicted and discharged

2:08 pm on 27 October 2011

Police in Auckland say that a backpacker caught scalping tickets to the Rugby World Cup final quickly left New Zealand after being convicted and discharged by the courts.

The man, 39, lives in London and was travelling on an Irish passport. He was arrested during the weekend near Party Central in Auckland with eight Rugby World Cup tickets and charged with receiving stolen goods.

Police believe he was acting in a group. They would not comment on reports that conmen posed as sponsors to steal complimentary tickets awaiting collection at hotel reception desks.

It was the third arrest for ticket scalping in Auckland.

Two men from Ethiopia are currently before the courts, after being arrested on the tournament's opening day.

They are charged with being part of a criminal enterprise and dishonestly obtaining 1734 tickets to the tournament, valued at $845,769.

Total value

The Ministry of Economic Development says up to 150 Rugby World Cup tickets were seized during the tournament, mostly from people in New Zealand trying to sell tickets on international websites.

The tickets were valued at $126,000 and 77 of them were for last weekend's final.

The ministry says most of the tickets were resold by the tournament organisers.