Man allegedly steals phones from Tinder dates
A MAN who allegedly stole mobile phones from people he met via dating apps has been granted bail as police issue a warning about online dating.
Michael Thomas Reed, 37, is accused of stealing phones from three people known to him at various locations in the Cairns CBD and Cairns North between June 6 and July 3.
Police have alleged the Gordonvale man used dating apps including Tinder to meet the alleged victims.
He appeared briefly in the Cairns Magistrates Court today charged with three counts of stealing following his arrest in Cairns Central on Monday.
The court heard he was taken into custody on a warrant for other matters.
Acting Magistrate Scott Luxton granted him bail after being told by police prosecutor Sgt Troy Sutton they were not objecting to his release.
The case was adjourned until August 19.
Speaking outside court Sen-Constable Russell Parker said these type of alleged incidents showed why it was important people were "vigilant" about their personal safety and security when using dating apps.
"Dating apps are a fact of life, but you've just got to be careful how you use them," he said.
"Criminals can play the dating game as well so you need to be very vigilant because you just don't know who you're dealing with until you get to know them better.
"You don't know who these people are so you shouldn't invite them into your home."
He urged people who may have become a victim of crime due to someone they met online to come forward.
"People might be embarrassed because they feel like they've been tricked into inviting these people into their homes," he said.
"But if you have been a victim of crime you still need to report it."