A cunning pickpocket in China has been caught on camera stealing a phone using a pair of chopsticks.
Wang Hongbo, 32, was snapped lifting the phone from a woman’s pocket as she cycled through Zhengzhou, the capital of central China’s Henan province.
Photographs show him running after the unsuspecting cyclist along a busy road.
Wang Hongbo runs behind the cyclist holding the specially adapted chopsticks
Dressed in a suit jacket and jeans, he is seen reaching out with a pair of chopsticks and carefully lifts the woman’s phone from her pocket.
A final photo shows him walking away with his
The thief was later seen examining his ill-gotten gains before selling the phone, which is thought to be an iPhone, in a nearby second hand shop.
A passer-by caught him in the act and photographed the whole incident unfolding. He later posted the pictures online.
Pressured by the circulating news reports after his picture was widely circulated, Hangbo contacted a local journalist, who recorded his story and accompanied him when he turned himself into police.
According to the Shanghaiist, a lifestyle website in Shanghai, Hangbo turned to stealing because he was struggling to raise his 12-year-old child alone.
This is not the first time a thief has struck using chopsticks in China.
In September 2011, two dark-coated men were caught on camera patrolling a backstreet before sneaking behind shoppers armed with the traditional Chinese utensil.
The shameless thieves used them to carefully prise items from the back pockets of unwitting shoppers.
Police in China said the gangs of opportunist pickpockets were using them to target busy shoppers, usually women laden down with heavy shopping.
The trend is thought to be spreading through Chinese cities.
Pickpockets operate right across the country and move mainly in busy marketplaces where detection is almost impossible due to the sheer volume of people.