Thieves leg it with Lego from Christchurch stationery store

LEGO sets like this are a hot item for shoplifters. Photo: Supplied
LEGO sets like this are a hot item for shoplifters. Photo: Supplied
Expensive Lego sets have become hot property for shoplifters in Christchurch.

A stationery store owner says he has lost more than $1000 in Lego after 30 sets were stolen from his business.

He has sent store security camera photos to police of the person he believes stole the sets, which are mostly Star Wars and 'LEGO City'.

The man is known to police and they are investigating the incidents.

This security camera footage was captured after more than $1000 in LEGO was stolen from a...
This security camera footage was captured after more than $1000 in LEGO was stolen from a Christchurch stationery store. Photo: Supplied
The store owner, who did not want his business identified, said the sets were sold on Facebook Marketplace under a fake name.

He said LEGO sets are targeted by shoplifters because they are popular with buyers and sell quickly.

The store owner said the thefts are frustrating as they have happened at a tough time for the business because of the financial impacts of Covid-19.

“I think sometimes these thieves just think they’re dealing with a big conglomerate that’s got money to burn,” he said.

“A lot of the time it’s locally-owned businesses, it’s a family that lives around the corner that are trying to make a buck.”

Detective Senior Sergeant Damon Wells said it is not uncommon for people to sell stolen items on Facebook Marketplace. He says some people even take the money paid through online transactions without handing over the items they advertised.

Wells said Facebook co-operates with police when they ask for information on who sold stolen goods, but because it is United States-based it can take weeks or months for its staff to provide details on who has sold stolen items.

Photo: Facebook
Photo: Facebook
He said Canterbury police receive reports almost every day about people selling stolen goods on Facebook Marketplace but it is hard for them to follow up all of them.

"On Facebook, we often say, well, I’m sorry, it’s just in the too hard basket," said Wells. 

"We’ve got 100 other files to deal with. If we spent a week dealing with your one, we can’t deal with many other files."

 

 

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