Brits are Europes champion shoplifters

November 20th, 2007 - 5:23 pm ICT by admin  

London, Nov.20 (ANI): Britain has been declared the shoplifting capital of Europe, with more than 1.5 billion pounds worth of products a year being stolen by customers.
Most goods are stolen in the four weeks before Christmas, with 26.4 million pounds worth of items disappearing from supermarket shelves, shops and off-licences every day.
Another 1.6 billion pounds worth of products are stolen by employees or lost in the distribution chain, reports The Times.
As a result of this chronic theft, every household in Britain ends up paying an extra 150 pounds for their goods this year.
The most popular goods to be targeted are alcohol, razor blades, accessories and specialist meats.
Britain has topped the table in Europe for the last seven years, meaning consumers have paid hundreds of pounds extra to cover the cost of the thefts.
David Nuttall, the managing director of Checkpoint Systems, who helped compile the report, said: Shops in Britain are open 24/7, which means that there are more outlets open, which means there is more opportunity for theft.
The annual Global Retail Theft Barometer looked at more than 800 retail giants, covering 32 countries, and responsible for 447 billion pounds worth of sales every year and found that Britain had the worst record for what it refers to as shrinkage.
It has topped the table for the past three years in Europe.
The report, which was compiled by the Centre for Retail Research in Nottingham and Checkpoint Systems, in the year up to July found that theft had cost retail establishments a total of 49.8 billion dollars a year globally.
Overall, shoplifting accounted for almost 21 billion pounds, staff theft for 17.5 billion pounds, supplier theft and fraud took up 3.1 billion pounds and accounting and administrative errors accounted for 8.2 billion pounds.
Last year, the amount lost to British retailers because of shrinkage fell by 3.3 per cent but the amount spent on security fell by 22 per cent to 769 million pounds.
The US has the worst record for shrinkage, losing about 20 billion pounds a year, although it is one of just a handful of markets where staff theft accounts for more losses than customer theft.
The British Retail Consortiums crime survey, released last month, found that shoplifting had increased by 65 per cent its highest level in ten years since the introduction of 80 pounds on-the-spot fines.
Last year, an estimated 33,000 offenders were punished with a fixed penalty notice. (ANI)

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