A “BAREFACED” cheat conned victims out of hundreds of pounds for festival tickets he never had.

Daniel Fitzgerald offered people entry to Reading Festival, banking cash then blocking people when no tickets showed up.

The 22-year-old appeared at Brighton Magistrates’ Court and admitted six frauds.

Police found evidence of hundreds of messages on his phone from the time of the offence where he was trying to find more people to help fund his drug addictions.

District Judge Amanda Kelly said the frauds were “mean and nasty” and said Fitzgerald had “deliberately conned victims”.

In court he said he felt “ashamed” as he was put under a curfew for six weeks.

Elizabeth Gray, prosecuting, said four offences related to offers for tickets for Reading Festival in August 2018.

Another fraud was for SW4 festival in August 2018 and he also offered a fraud victim BMX wheels and made £150 in April 2018.

Ms Gray said he had responded to requests for festival tickets on Facebook, only to ignore people or block them when they questioned why they had not received their entries.

Fitzgerald had claimed he could not remember offering tickets without posting them, despite giving people fake tracking reference numbers.

He claimed he was addicted to a cocktail of drugs including Xanax to treat his anxiety, along with ketamine, cannabis and cocaine.

Ms Gray described it as a “formidable array” of drugs that he was taking.

A probation report found that Fitzgerald, a cleaner at Gatwick airport, has been signed off sick because of his mental health issues.

He is set for a psychiatric assessment to treat him for depression and anxiety.

Stephen Paley, defending, said the offences were “not sophisticated” as he had sent pictures of himself with identification such as a driving licence.

He had not thought about the consequences of getting caught.

A probation report suggested he struggled to think about the consequences of his actions.

District Judge Kelly said his offences may not have been sophisticated but they were “barefaced”.

She said: “They are certainly very mean and nasty. You deliberately conned these victims to part them from their hard-earned money.

“It was persistent and premeditated. It causes a lot of anger and frustration.

“When people are defrauded, they have bought tickets, made arrangements, told friends and booked time off work to attend a festival.

“They plan their lives around these events, so when it transpires they are not going there is distress, heartache, anger and frustration.

“You should be thoroughly ashamed.”

She was told that Fitzgerald, of Blackman Street, Brighton, has weaned himself off Xanax and other drugs.

Fitzgerald was put under curfew at his address between 9pm and 6am.

He was ordered to pay £1,061 in compensation and complete ten rehabilitation sessions.