Expensive act of charity

Police are seeking the return of jewellery, valued at more than $10,000, which was put in an Ugg boot for safe-keeping and later inadvertently given to the Salvation Army.

The Oamaru owner of the jewellery, who did not want to be named, said yesterday she had gone on holiday earlier this year and wanted somewhere to hide the jewellery.

It fitted in the toe of the boot.

The brooches, watches, chains and necklaces were a mix of antique and modern, with some items dating back to the late 1800s.

When she recently went to get the jewellery, she could not find the sheepskin boots and later realised that she had cleaned out her wardrobe and taken a load, including the boots, to the Salvation Army on June 4.

The woman said she now felt "stupid" and hoped the items would be returned.

Some had belonged to her grandparents and her mother, and her husband had always bought her "beautiful" jewellery, she said.

Police were requesting the return of the jewellery or confidential information about its whereabouts.

"It is not a case of finders-keepers, and it is a criminal offence to keep or sell the jewellery," Constable Peter Scott said.

Ugg boots were popular items and they might have sold quickly, he said.

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