Sheffield ‘charity box thief is the lowest of the low’

A man from CCTV who is suspected of stealing a charity box from Darnall Health Centre on York Road
A man from CCTV who is suspected of stealing a charity box from Darnall Health Centre on York Road
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A Sheffield optician has branded a thief who stole their cancer charity box as the ‘lowest of the low’.

Irfan Uddin, who works at the Darnall Health Centre on York Road, described the act as ‘disgraceful’ after a man in his ‘mid-40s’ stole a Macmillan cancer charity collection box – thought to contain over £100 – from the reception desk.

The man, who was captured on CCTV taking the tin, is said to have been seen on video footage edging it across the desk before hiding it in his jacket.

The suspect was described by Mr Uddin as slim and clean-shaven with a tanned complexion.

He said: “At the time, the man didn’t seem suspicious at all.

“We only realised the tin had gone when the receptionist noticed it some time later.

“He was there for 15 to 20 minutes and originally came in to book appointments for his children. It turned out they were fake names and addresses.

“He then asked for a taxi to be called and as he waited, the CCTV shows the man standing up at different points, edging the box closer to him across the reception desk.”

The eye specialist said the charity meant a lot to him, as he lost his cousin to cancer aged just 33.

“We’ve had people stealing eye drops and show glasses before but it hurt me a bit more knowing it was the Macmillan box,” Mr Uddin said.

“I lost my cousin to cancer and we raised money previously for the charity. It had well over £100 in it.

“It’s the lowest of the low, stealing from a charity. You don’t really know what to say to something like that, it’s disgraceful really.

“I hope the police can catch this guy.”

Police are investigating the incident and are looking through CCTV footage from the health centre filmed at the time of the theft two weeks ago.

A South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “Officers were called to the Darnall Health Centre on York Road at around 3.30pm on Thursday, July 14, to reports a charity box was stolen from the premises.”

n Anyone with information should call 101, quoting incident 661 of July 14.