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Sheeran ticket touts jailed

Ticket touts who ripped off fans of Ed Sheeran, Adele, and other artists to the tune of $12.1 million have been jailed.

Peter Hunter and David Smith, who traded as the firms Ticket Wiz and BZZ, bought tickets for gigs and then sold them for $12.1 million more than they paid for them, a hearing at Leeds Crown Court in England heard on Monday.

Hunter was sentenced to four years in jail, and Smith for two and a half years, by Judge Mushtaq Khokhar, for three counts of fraudulent trading and one count of possession or control of an article for use in fraud, according to BBC Yorkshire.

The pair, who are married, bought more than 750 tickets for Sheeran events alone, and Sheeran's manager Stuart Camp, who has led a campaign against touting via secondary ticketing websites, gave evidence after $97 seats for a charity gig were spotted on sale for $9,100.

Lord Toby Harris, the Chair of Britain's National Trading Standards organization, who intervened to halt the pair's activities, said in a statement: "This is an important milestone in the fight to tackle online ticket touts who fraudulently buy and resell tickets to thousands of victims to line their own pockets.

"Today's sentences send a strong message to similar online ticket touts: these are criminal offenses that can lead to prison sentences."

The couple used multiple identities and computer robots to buy tickets, selling them for inflated prices on secondary ticketing websites, and when their home was raided, investigators found 112 different payment cards in 37 names.

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