Investigation & Surveillance

Update: Coleen Rooney stolen camera blackmail plotters end up in court.

Update: Coleen Rooney stolen camera blackmail plotters receive sentences.

Two men admitted handling stolen goods and blackmail.  Lee Platt was jailed for two years and Steven Malcolm for 20 months.

Platt’s girlfriend Jennifer Green was given a 12-month community order and told to perform 40 hours of unpaid work after admitting her part in the plot.


Coleen Rooney’s digital camera went missing during a Black Eyed Peas concert at the MEN arena Manchester in May 2010.  Her camera is said to have contained over 400 images of the Rooney’s and their son Kai, aged 2.

Steven Malcolm and Jennifer Green both from Manchester were held after Coleen Rooney’s camera when missing.

Deborah Gould who cross examined the trio, said: “The prosecution case is that these two defendants together with Lee Platt, who is the partner of Jennifer Green, came into possession of the camera and the memory card and then sought by unlawful means to make money out of the situation”.  Ms Gould said the defendants “acted as a gang”.

She said that they contacted Manchester United Football Club trying to extract £1,000 from Rooney’s agent for return of the memory card and the photographs.

Following some unpleasant publicity about Wayne Rooney, they then decided to increase the amount of their demand to £5,000.  They supposedly approached various media outlets with a view to selling the private stolen images.

Hello magazine informed Paul Stretford, Wayne Rooney’s agent of the approach and the police were then informed.  They decided to deploy undercover police officers and one substituted as the Rooney’s publicity agent.

The undercover officers arranged a meet to do the deal.  One officer, known as PC James posed as a business rep of the Rooney’s and Manchester United.

The meeting was arranged at the Marriott Hotel in Manchester for the 10th September 2010.

A witness at the hotel bar told the court that the Mr Malcolm “placed a black lever- arch folder on the table and a memory card”.

When the officer met with Mr Malcolm he put the memory card into his laptop and he saw the images of Rooney and his family.  The folder contained 11 pages of thumbnail photos of the Rooney’s taken from the memory card.

PC James said: “My colleague produced a quantity of money, which was £5000 and started counting it”.

A witness said that Mr Malcolm then “sat forward, watching the money being counted in anticipation”.  It was then that the officers were alerted and Mr Malcolm was arrested.

Steven Malcolm firstly denied any charges against him but on day 3 of the trial changed his plea to guilty.

Malcolm admitted handling stolen goods and blackmail.  He claimed he acted as a “middle man” for his boss, Lee Platt.

Both men will be sentenced together, after the conclusion of Jennifer Green’s trial, Platt’s business partner and girlfriend.

She initially denies both charges against her but later admitted knowing her boyfriend and business partner had possession of the stolen images.  The blackmail charge was dropped against her.

Lee Platt from Manchester had previously admitted to charges of blackmail and handling stolen goods at an earlier hearing.

The trial being held at Manchester Crown Court is expected to last a week.

High profile High Net Worth individuals are at a high risk of threats towards themselves and their family.  Just over a year ago Rooney faced an angry mob outside his home as enraged Manchester United fans reacted to the possibility of their star striker making a move to rivals Manchester City.  “Join City and You’re dead” was painted on a banner outside his house.

This all happened at Rooney’s house, where he lives with his wife and son.  Manchester United sent a private security team of close protection officers (CPO’s) to keep watch over Rooney’s house.  Rooney and his family are likely to have VIP protection for the rest of his career.