Rangos Arrested Outside O2

Notorious U.K.-based ticket tout Michael Rangos is believed to have been arrested outside the O2 Arena March 5.

Greenwich police would only say a 36-year-old man was detained under suspicion of money-laundering and may be subject to further investigation and Crown Prosecution Service advice. Eyewitness accounts have confirmed it was Rangos.

A police spokesman said the man was taken to Greenwich police station, where he was found to be in possession of £1,100 cash. The money was confiscated and will be held under “proceeds of crime” legislation.

The High Court put Rangos’ GetMetTickets business into compulsory liquidation in 2006 after the Department of Trade & Industry found it wasn’t in the public interest to continue trading. Rangos has twice been the subject of BBC consumer rights program “Watchdog.”

The DTI’s Companies Investigation Branch (CIB) raided GetMeTickets’ London offices, seized assets and company records and found it didn’t have sufficient stock to supply all the customers who ordered and paid for tickets.

GetMeTickets was responsible for mayhem and misery at the 2005 edition of Scotland’s T In The Park Festival after overselling by at least 200 and leaving fans ticket-less and stranded outside the site.

Geoff Ellis from DF Concerts, which puts on T In The Park with Irish promoter Denis Desmond (MCD), was furious because he was left to front the disappointed fans and find ways of getting them back home.

GetMeTickets was also caught selling £42-£50 Robbie Williams tickets at £125 for dates and venues that bore no relation to the tour itinerary.

One of the BBC “Watchdog” programs and the corporation’s FiveLive radio station connected Rangos to The Online Ticket Shop, which was selling 2006 World Cup tickets for 10 to 12 times face value.

Although the 1994 Criminal Justice Act made it illegal to sell soccer tickets in the U.K., the BBC station’s reporters believed the company may have exploited a loophole in the law by registering the company as being based in the U.S.

Rangos is also believed to have been involved with TicketTout, a connection that company administrator Lane Bednash of Valentine & Co began investigating when he discovered TicketTout chief Caroline Beale used to work for him at GetMeTickets.

Ticket Tout was incorporated at Companies House in February 2006, within days of GetMeTickets going bust.

Beale sent Pollstar a statement warning she would “pursue legally any untrue allegations that portray our company [Ticket Tout Ltd] in a negative way” but failed to respond to subsequent requests for more information about the company’s connection with Rangos.

Thousands of music fans lost an estimated £1.5 million when Ticket Tout collapsed in February 2007, a year after it had started trading.