A ‘hugger mugger’ choked a victim until he passed out and then stole his £5,000 Rolex watch.
The attacker befriended the student by asking him for a cigarette and walking alongside him.
The mugger then began to talk about martial arts before suddenly putting his arm across the 24-year-old’s throat and squeezing it.
CCTV footage shows the student’s legs give way as he loses consciousness and the attacker then grabs his expensive Rolex Submariner watch before running away.
The victim was left slumped on the floor after the attack.
The incident happened opposite the Strawberry Moons bar in Heddon Street, off Regent Street in central London, in the early hours of Saturday, May 10.
Police describe the mugger as 1.7m (5ft 8in), Arab-looking, muscular, bald and wearing a dark baseball-style jacket, dark blue jeans and a black baseball cap.
‘The suspect targeted his victim carefully, choosing someone who was a bit the worse for wear after a night out, alone and smartly dressed,’ said Det Con Michael Heaney of the Metropolitan Police.
‘The method he uses is not something that we have seen before in this area, and is a concern.
‘Had the suspect applied more pressure, the victim could have been far more seriously injured. As it was, he was just badly shaken.’
Det Con Heaney added: ‘We are asking anyone with information to please come forward.
‘Do you recognise the suspect? Did you see him running from the area after the robbery?
22 May 2014 | 11:02 pm – Source: metro.co.uk