A British man attempted to rob a store in Sunderland, UK, after having lost all his savings in a cryptocurrency scam.
Louis Crosby, 25, said he needed the money for a wedding as he was going to marry a "Singaporean national" he met online, the BBC reported.
Crosby was sentenced to two years' jail.
Lost savings in cryptocurrency scam
Crosby was an undergraduate student who met a Singaporean online and intended to get married.
According to the BBC, quoting Crosby's barrister Nicholas Lane:
"He had somewhat naively invested his savings he needed for a wedding dowry and for his rent into cryptocurrency and he himself had been scammed."
Crosby walked into a Premier store (a convenience store chain in the UK) in November 2021 while carrying a gun.
Wearing a scarf and sunglasses to conceal his features, he demanded money from the staff.
However, the store owner and another employee fought back, knocked the gun out of his hand, and called the police.
Crosby tried to escape but was later arrested. At the time, he tried to claim that the robbery attempt was a "joke".
The gun turned out to be an unloaded air pistol (which fires BB pellets instead of bullets).
Lane also said during the hearing:
"In clearly a moment when he wasn't thinking straight he took up an air pistol, which he had bought off the internet, and committed this offence."
A doctor assessed that Crosby, who has a history of mental health issues, found that the offence was an "impulsive response" to his cryptocurrency losses.
Judge Julie Clemitson accepted that Crosby's "shame and remorse" were genuine.
During sentencing, Clemitson said Crosby must have been in "mental turmoil", triggered by being a victim of crime himself, and losing money which he worked hard for and saved up.
Crosby's jail sentence has been suspended. He will face a 12-month curfew and rehabilitation requirements.
Top image from Romance Scams Now Facebook page via Northumbria Police.