Shoplifting: Merchants take justice into their own hands

More and more merchants, outraged by rising rates of shoplifting due to inflation, have decided to do justice to themselves by exposing petty cybercriminals who would rather steal than pay.

• Read also: Shop theft rates on the rise as the festive season approaches

• Read also: Thieves are still very active in SAQ despite the pandemic

“With grocery store inflation soaring, merchants are reporting more thefts in Quebec. They mostly take away luxury items. We’re not talking about spice thefts or Kraft dinners,” notes Stéphane Lacasse, director of public affairs and government relations jokingly. In the Food Retailers Association.

Raiders have luxury tastes these days. He identifies that expensive meats and cheeses and alcohol are the products that often slip under the wrapper and into the thugs’ bags.

Angry at the situation, some traders decided to take the bull by the horns to denounce the situation.

There is not enough evidence

In fact, Newspaper Dozens of videos and photos posted by these merchants who decided to take justice into their own hands. In most cases they post the faces of the criminals to discourage them from returning home.

Shoplifting: Merchants take justice into their own hands

Image taken from Facebook, Isabel Lamoure

“There is no point in calling the police, we lack information. Instead, we put the video of the thief on our social networks and photographed it in our doorway,” said Nam Huang, an employee of the Viet Grill Express restaurant in Montreal.

The latter here refers to the customer, who, in March, took the opportunity to steal several goods in the restaurant’s small grocery store by coming in for a quick bite.

Make your own investigation

Ray Martin, the owner of a Gatineau auto repair garage, claims to have posted a photo of a thief to expose him in February.

I understand the police are very busy with these petty crimes. We have to bring them all the information we have on a silver platter. Otherwise, we would never find the person who emptied our cash register and left with two electronic tablets,” he laments.

At the Dépanneur Proprio, on Ontario’s Boulevard in Montreal, owner Ling assures customers dare to steal it more because wearing a mask is mandatory. consequences ? Her window is now surrounded by pictures of these criminals.

Ling, a grocery store owner on an Ontario street in Montreal, decided to display in his window the faces of the thieves who raged at his business (opposite).  Other traders chose instead to post pictures of the thieves on social media.

Clara Loiso’s photo

Ling, a grocery store owner on an Ontario street in Montreal, decided to display in his window the faces of the thieves who raged at his business (opposite). Other traders chose instead to post pictures of the thieves on social media.

They mainly come to steal alcohol from my house. With the mask on, they think they’ll remain anonymous.”

Too busy during the pandemic

Police services in Montreal, Laval, Longueuil, Levi’s and Souriate de Québec (SQ) have recorded a sharp decline in this type of crime since 2019. But that doesn’t mean there are fewer, warns Lacasse, from the Food Retailers Association.

“Traders have been very busy during the pandemic and do not necessarily have time to convict thieves with all the sanitary rules, for example. Same for the police.”

– In collaboration with Clara Loiseau

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