A teenager will spend a year behind bars after he admitted robbing a taxi driver of cash and his mobile phone.

The 17-year-old, who cannot be named, was 16 when he carried out the attack, was found guilty of one count of robbery at the Old Bailey yesterday.

The court heard how he was part of a group of youths who hailed the cab from West Croydon on July 5 last year and asked to be taken to an address in Thornton Heath.

As the victim, a man in his 40’s, drove along London Road, the teenager snatched his phone.

When the driver stopped and demanded it back he punched the man in the stomach, grabbed £20 in cash from the driver and ran off.

Using CCTV officer were able to identify the boy, who was given 12 months at a youth detention centre, alongside three others who were acquitted of charges laid against them.

DC Matt Day, the officer who investigated the case said: “The youth that committed this robbery took the phone from the victim in the car and then snatched money from him and punched him before running off.

“This should serve as a strong warning and deterrent to other young people who may be thinking about committing robbery; it is a serious offence and you could face a lengthy sentence if you commit robbery.”