Man jailed for four years for attempting to steal Magna Carta

Man jailed for four years for attempting to steal Magna Carta

Published by Jack Deery at 4:05pm 10th July 2020. (Updated at 4:12pm 10th July 2020)

2 minute read

Mark Royden, from Kent, was found guilty of criminal damage and attempted theft after a trial back in January.

The 47 year old has now been sentenced to four years in jail after the incident at Salisbury Cathedral in 2018. 

On the 25th October, Royden set off a fire alarm in the toilet area of The Cloisters before entering the Chapter House and damaging the glass case containing the historical document. 

Magna Carta Smashed Glass February 2019
The damaged glass is now on display in Salisbury Cathedral

Three holes were created after he struck it with a hammer, but the Magna Carta itself was not damaged. 

He then tried to leave the site, before being stopped by cathedral workers and then arrested by police. 

Royden claimed that the document wasn't real, and that's why he tried to steal it.

The damage he caused was worth £14,466.

Det Con Richard Barratt, from Salisbury CID, said: 

"This was a frightening and upsetting incident for those who were in the cathedral at the time, although, thankfully, there was no damage caused to Magna Carta itself.

I would like to thank everyone involved for their support and co-operation, but also highlight the public-spirited actions of the people who intervened and prevented Royden from leaving the site, detaining him there until police arrived."

A 'near perfect' copy is on display at Salisbury Cathedral, with the original locked in the Chapter House.

Email Icon

Sign up for exclusive news, competitions and offers.
Proper Local News updates from Spire FM

© Copyright 2020 Spire FM, A UKRD group company