Tokunbo Olabode, of no fixed abode, admitted a charge of fraud and attempted fraud, both by misrepresentation, when he appeared at Solihull Magistrates Court via video link on Tuesday April 10.
Baldev Atwal, prosecuting, told the court that the 27-year-old had entered Argos in Mill Lane, Solihull on March 21 and tried to buy an Apple iPad and £500 gift card.
But when the cashier became suspicious and the store manager asked for authorisation, Olabode informed them he had left his bank card in his car and did not return.
The store informed colleagues at the Sears Retail Park branch in Shirley who saw the Coventry University student enter their store at 3pm later that day, and used the quick pay system to purchase two Apple iPads, the court heard.
Police were called, said Mr Atwal, and Olabode was detained by officers who found £1,190 in cash on him and a Santander bank card in someone else’s name.
Later in interview, the fraudster admitted the card was stolen and had been used to make various fraudulent purchases to help fund his tuition fees.
Olabode, from Algeria, also admitted changing his name and obtaining a fake passport to enrol at Coventry University.
Adam Carrolan, defending, said: “He turned to this as a matter of desperation.
“Given the fact that he is of no fixed abode and his immigration status is in limbo, I would have to accept the custody threshold is passed.”
Olabode was handed an eight week prison sentence.