South Yorkshire Police target shoplifters

Police Raide the homes of shoplifting suspects
Police Raide the homes of shoplifting suspects
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Shoplifters committed 137 offences in the last month alone in Barnsley, according to new police figures.

South Yorkshire Police analysed offences reported to the force and found that meat, other food items and alcohol were among the most commonly stolen products.

So far 33 suspects have been charged in relation to 50 of the 137 offences.

Police chiefs said officers are examining CCTV footage in a bid to identify others involved in the offences.

Inspector Julie Mitchell said: “Shoplifting is not a victimless crime. It leads to raised prices on all our weekly shopping bills, placing an additional burden on already stretched budgets.

“People who steal risk gaining a criminal conviction which may limit future job opportunities and visits to other countries.

“It is not just the thief who is to blame. Those who decide to buy cheap stolen goods from them are as guilty as those who commit the original theft.

“The majority of offences committed in Barnsley involve theft of alcohol and meat, usually to sell on for cash.

“Many offenders tell us that this cash is used to fund their lifestyles, often involving substance misuse.

“Police in Barnsley are determined to address this issue and will name and shame those responsible, including those found handling stolen goods.

“Please do not resort to crime. For those people who are struggling to make ends meet, there are a number of agencies in Barnsley who can assist, for example the Citizens Advice Bureau and the Credit Union.

“They will signpost people to the most appropriate source of help.”

Police in Sheffield recently ran an operation cracking down on shoplifting, where they raided the homes of suspects across the city looking for stolen goods.

Anyone with information about shoplifters who target stores in the county should call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.