An unemployed man who stole wallets from 21 music teachers and used their credit cards to make more than HK$260,000 in fraudulent purchases was jailed for five years yesterday. The District Court was told Ken Tsui Yin-chung went on the stealing spree at 21 music studios across the city between April and August last year, just seven months after his release from prison in September 2008 for similar offences. In his last conviction, he was jailed three years and four months for thefts in various shops, as well as using stolen credit cards to buy goods. Tsui, 35, who had three previous convictions, pleaded guilty to 21 counts of theft before Deputy Judge Gary Lam Kar-yan. Prosecutor Lily Ho said the victims were teachers in various music studios in Kowloon, Hong Kong and the New Territories. She said Tsui used pretexts to loiter inside the studios, such as by enquiring about music courses or pretending to wait for a sister to finish her piano lesson. The court heard that Tsui took unattended wallets or just the credit cards, which he used to buy more than 100 items, such as dried seafood, cash coupons, sports shoes, bird's nests, mobile phones, a Tudor watch, clothing and books amounting to HK$269,099. Police investigated after several music teachers reported the theft of their wallets and credit cards between May and August.They found that on July 29 last year Tsui pawned a Tudor watch bought a month earlier with a credit card bearing the name of a music teacher at Tom Lee Music. During surveillance, they arrested Tsui on August 22 after seeing him entering two music studios and then going to a Manning's shop. He led police to his home in Tung Chung, where they recovered more than 100 purchased items. In sentencing, Lam said the aggravating factor was Tsui committing the same offences just seven months after his release from jail, and buying goods using stolen credit cards. The judge adopted a starting point of 15 months for each of the charges, but gave a one-third discount for Tsui's guilty plea.