A 39-year-old man has been arrested in London for stealing Wi-Fi.

The man, who was using his laptop sat on a garden wall outside a home in Chiswick yesterday, was using a household's Wi-Fi broadband connection without permission.

He was arrested and then released on bail until October. His case, now being handled by the Metropolitan Police's Computer Crime Unit, could see him get a fine, 6 months in prison, or both.

"This arrest should act as a warning to anyone who thinks it is acceptable to illegally use other people’s broadband connections", Det Con Mark Roberts said.

"To do so potentially breaches the Computer Misuse Act and the Communications Act, so computer users need to be aware that this is unlawful and police will investigate any violation we become aware of."

The first ever case of Wi-Fi theft that made it to court was back in 2005 when an Ealing man was arrested for stealing Wi-Fi from a householder.

He was fined £500 and given 12-months conditional discharge.