The consequences of shoplifting

Sir – I write to express my indignation at the behaviour I witnessed of a group of potential shoplifters, on this occasion uniformed school boys with the apparent intention of stealing pot noodles and orange juice from Welwyn s Tesco Express. I watched

Sir - I write to express my indignation at the behaviour I witnessed of a group of potential shoplifters, on this occasion uniformed school boys with the apparent intention of stealing pot noodles and orange juice from Welwyn's Tesco Express.

I watched with interest the behaviour of seven or more boys in the store. They had a strategy. One with his back to the till enabled others to pass in front. Still more wandered about creating distractions. One child, alerted to the fact that they had been detected, quickly returned unpurchased items, others heading for the exit.

At this time there was an inadequate number of staff. I loudly told them what I had seen. This gave the boys every opportunity to refute my implications and defend themselves. They didn't and carried on retreating. The store manager and staff did what they could. They were however too busy to be constantly vigilant. In such stores there is neither support nor protection when thieves are confronted.

Compared to the violent crimes around us nowadays shoplifting seems insignificant, but it shouldn't be. Small time crooks can become big time. The consequences of these acts involve us all. Shoplifting seems to be prevalent among the young though it is not confined to any one age group.


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Perhaps Tesco don't notice the loss of revenue from shop lifting. We the public pay for it.

Janet Chapman, Mimram Road, Welwyn.

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