More

    Cost of living crisis “no excuse” for shoplifting, says policing minister

    Crime and Policing Minister Chris Philp

    The cost of living crisis is “no excuse” for shoplifting, Minister for policing Chris Philp has said, adding that UK’s benefits system is “very generous”.

    Speaking to Sky News, Philp said, “There is no excuse for any criminal activity including shoplifting.”

    “We’ve got a very generous benefits system. We’re spending well over £100 billion a year on working age benefits. They went up by 10 per cent last year. They’re going to go up by another 6.7 per cent in April. The national minimum wage has just gone up by around about 10 per cent,” he said.

    Asked if he had any sympathy for people stealing to put food on the table, Philp said gangs, criminal re-selling and drugs were largely to blame.

    The policing minister warned that a lack of focus on shoplifting by forces means there has been “no deterrence”.

    Referring to looting that has taken place in some American cities, Philp said, “The San Francisco case study… shows what happens when you have a permissive environment where the police don’t take further action, where you don’t have a zero-tolerance approach, you get these crime types simply escalating.”

    Philp’s comments come amid escalating levels of retail thefts, with increases blamed on inflation, organised crime and a lack of focus from police.

    A survey by the British Retail Consortium this year found levels of shoplifting in 10 major cities had risen by an average of 27 per cent compared with 2022, costing businesses £1.76 billion over a 12-month period.

    In October, the Home Office announced a retail crime plan involving the creation of a team of specialist analysts to gather intelligence on gangs responsible for shoplifting. Police forces also committed to attending more crime scenes, with facial recognition used to target offenders.

    Latest

    Rekorderlig unveils new Peach-Raspberry flavour for 2024

    Rekorderlig is expanding its range with the launch of...

    Historic charity, NewstrAid, announces 185th birthday raffle

    Industry charity, NewstrAid, has announced it will be holding...

    £10,000 worth of illegal vapes, tobacco seized in South Tyneside

    Around £10,000 worth of illegal vapes and tobacco has...

    Matt Collins appointed sales director of KP Snacks as Andy Riddle moves to Tropicana

    KP Snacks has announced the appointment of Matt Collins...

    Don't miss

    Rekorderlig unveils new Peach-Raspberry flavour for 2024

    Rekorderlig is expanding its range with the launch of...

    Historic charity, NewstrAid, announces 185th birthday raffle

    Industry charity, NewstrAid, has announced it will be holding...

    £10,000 worth of illegal vapes, tobacco seized in South Tyneside

    Around £10,000 worth of illegal vapes and tobacco has...

    Matt Collins appointed sales director of KP Snacks as Andy Riddle moves to Tropicana

    KP Snacks has announced the appointment of Matt Collins...

    UK has lowest smoking rate despite Sunak’s ‘bizarre’ tobacco ban

    Rishi Sunak’s tobacco ban is “preposterous”, “unenforceable” and “bizarre”,...

    Historic charity, NewstrAid, announces 185th birthday raffle

    Industry charity, NewstrAid, has announced it will be holding a special 185th birthday raffle as part of its anniversary celebrations this summer. Everyone from the...

    £10,000 worth of illegal vapes, tobacco seized in South Tyneside

    Around £10,000 worth of illegal vapes and tobacco has been swept off South Tyneside’s streets - and public tip-offs played a massive part. More than...

    Matt Collins appointed sales director of KP Snacks as Andy Riddle moves to Tropicana

    KP Snacks has announced the appointment of Matt Collins as its new sales director.  Matt has been with KP Snacks for 10 years, most recently as...