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YouTube helps catch New Zealand thief     Send a link to a friend

[August 10, 2007]  WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) -- A thief was convicted and fined after being spotted on a video posted online on YouTube.

The man was taped slowly circling the store, stealing a laptop computer, slipping the computer into his overcoat and stepping out of the store in the South Island town of Greymouth, local media reported Friday.

The whole performance was posted on YouTube -- set to "The Pink Panther" music track -- and attracted 500,000 hits from around the globe.

One viewer recognized the man and alerted police. Dawson Anthony Bliss, 50, was convicted of theft in Greymouth District Court on Thursday after pleading guilty.

Judge Gary MacAskill fined Bliss $1,485 and ordered him to pay $1,478 in reparation.

Greymouth on South Island's west coast is 234 miles south of the capital, Wellington.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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