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Cellphone jamming scam exposed

Seller offered to block mobile phones in hotels and bars

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A Scottish wide-boy selling mobile phone jamming equipment to hotels has been exposed by local newspaper the Daily Record.

Ronnie McGuire was caught selling the illegal devices, which send out radio waves that swamp the signal between base stations and mobile phones, rendering handsets inoperable in the vicinity of the jamming equipment. He was selling the devices, imported from Taiwan, to hotels and bars at £75 a time.

His pitch was that mobile phone users would be unable to get a signal in premises where the device is used, forcing them to use expensive hotel or guest house phone facilities instead. The devices also stop hotel or bar staff using their own mobiles at work.

The Daily Record reports that McGuire promoted his illicit kit in glossy leaflets that state: "Harassed by mobile phones or hotel phone system not being used?

"Then look no further. Purchase a mobile phone jammer for your hotel, restaurant and bar. Small and discrete."

McGuire told an undercover reporter from the paper: "I've sold quite a few to hotels and bed-and-breakfasts.

"It helps with the internal phone system because people use it and the coin box a lot more.

"It comes up on [users' handsets] 'no service' and people think there's no service in that area. But it's best not to tell anyone you've got it because they might not be too happy," he added.

Indeed.

McGuire, of Crieff in Scotland, sold a Daily Record reporter posing as the owner of a bed-and-breakfast establishment a jammer and battery pack for £75. He sells the devices as a sideline to his Electron Electrical Engineering Services reselling business.

The phone jamming equipment is prohibited in the UK and people caught using it are subject to fines from The Radiocommunications Agency, a point McGuire unsurprisingly failed to bring up in his conversation with the undercover reporter. ®

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