POLICE in the Bridlington warned people that shop theft will not be tolerated.
Inspector Grant Taylor of Bridlington’s Neighbourhood Policing Team said those who steal from shops will be prosecuted.
His comments come after a 34-year-old woman was charged with shoplifting from Morrisons supermarket in Bessingby Road.
The woman is due to appear at Bridlington magistrates court on Wednesday.
“It is important that people remember that not only stealing is illegal, also purchasing stolen goods is also against the law. In these hard economic times and people are desperate to save money wherever they can. But this is not the way to do it,” said Inspector Taylor.
Buying stolen property could lead to a charge of handling stolen goods which is also a crime and can result in a fine or community order in lesser cases or a custodial sentence of up to 14 years for more serious cases.
Finding more out about the person selling goods and even the goods themselves can avoid you getting a criminal record.
“It’s the same rule of thumb as most things – if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is,” said Inspector Taylor.
The police say people are uinlikely to be arrested if they did not know the goods they bought were stolen but should always tell police as soon as they discover or even suspect they may have bought stolen goods. People should also stop using the goods. Carrying on using them without telling the police could lead to arrest for handling stolen goods.
“The local Neighbourhood Policing Team has a really good relationship with the Bridlington second-hand shops, the staff are all aware of the law in relation to handling stolen goods. People often feel that this is a victimless crime but it is not just large retailers that are hit by this type of crime. Smaller local shops are also victims of theft which directly hits the local economy and jobs.”