Law student boasts about making £300 selling stolen university library books

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By Thomas Connelly on

Is this tale of a youthful tea-leaf an illustration of modern commercial awareness — or just outright criminality?


An anonymous law graduate simply known as ‘Jack’ has allegedly confessed to selling his stash of stolen textbooks in the student paper, The Tab.

The newspaper reports that Jack maintained that he could not afford new books required for his final year arguing:

“I paid £3,000 a year and sometimes the library only had one copy of a book that I needed, so the day I had it I thought ‘fuck it’ and stole it.”

Jack explained the straight forward process of ripping out the security tags, placing the books in his bag, and then blithely walking straight out the library doors.

Although Legal Cheek hardly condones the activity, for Jack, the risk appeared to be worth it; he allegedly claims to have trousered £90 from the sale of one property law book, which he flogged, amongst others, on a popular online store.

Law students are placed under incredible levels of scrutiny from potential employers. So any incidents of proved illegal behaviour will almost certainly dash hopes of a future in what is already a highly competitive employment market.

However, two years ago university fees trebled, and fees for the Legal Practice Course and Bar Professional Training Course are at record levels. This has resulted in students undertaking work that may not be deemed appropriate — or in Jack’s case, even legal.

Other recent tales involve law student Vanessa Knowles, who gained wide media coverage last year after Legal Cheek revealed her semi-naked selfies on Twitter, which she had posted in the hope that admirers would be so enamoured they would buy law textbooks for her.

Knowles’s gambit may have pushed the boundaries of good taste, but at least it was legal. Which is more than can be said of Brian Coughlan’s antics. Last spring, Legal Cheek reported on the Hertfordshire University first-year law student’s conviction and three-year jail sentence for dealing cocaine.


Law student posts semi-naked selfies on Twitter in bid to fund legal textbook costs [Legal Cheek]

Law student jailed for dealing crack cocaine [Legal Cheek]