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Police search for professional shoplifters

Shoplifter [centre] caught on CCTV at Carterton Bottle Store. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

ALEYNA MARTINEZ
[email protected]

The Carterton Bottle Store robbery on June 4 was the work of “professional shoplifters” who police believe travelled north from Hutt Valley.

Wairarapa Police Area Commander Scott Miller said they were working closely with Hutt Police to arrest the three offenders who absconded with about $200 worth of spirits.

“It’s a job,” he said, where people will travel and classically operate in a group of three or four people.

“They’ve worked out what they need to do – three will go into the store, one will stay in the car, three of them will be there to actually steal.”

Miller said often a person will interact with the shop owner to distract them or take them to an area away from where the stealing is happening.

They will “ask them about different things while the others are doing the stealing and then they’re off”, he said.

Miller said the offenders had been identified.

“We’ve been looking for them.”

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