Nearly $10,000 worth of meat stolen last month in Auckland
According to crime-prevention software Auror, meat was by far the most commonly stolen item across a range of products, including health and beauty goods and household items.
It is believed that the stolen meat is often sold on through online forums and community buying/selling groups on social media. The reselling of stolen meat is much less likely to arouse suspicion compared to electronic goods, such a stereos and televisions, due to the latter’s dramatic markdown in price. Meat is also easily disposed of.
“Few people would suspect meat as a ‘hot item’ for thieves, but the reality is that it’s the leading category of theft for grocery retailers,” said Auror’s chief executive Phil Thomson.
“In our experience, that’s not merely because meat is an expensive item, but because it’s worth a fair amount on the black market. We’re aware that it’s often stolen in large quantities, then sold online through social media, and we’ve even seen reports where items like bacon have been used as currency by criminals to barter.”
Auror recorded at least 20 cases of over $200-worth of meat stolen last month. However, the crime prevention organisation only observes when the theft attempts were unsuccessful.
“Our message to retailers is to be vigilant about organised criminals targeting their stores, and for the public to be wary of anyone online that may be proffering a ‘great deal’ on supposedly store-bought meat,” added Thomson.