Retail NI Demand Action As Shoplifting Increases By 12%

A retail chief is calling for tougher penalties to deal with shoplifters after it emerged that the crime has spiked by 12% in Belfast.

Retail NI Chief Executive Glyn Roberts said the current fixed penalties are no longer adequate, as retailers across Belfast and beyond endure the consequences of increased shoplifting.

He said: "Shoplifting is not a victimless crime - it has a direct impact on our members' profit margins.
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"This is becoming a huge and unacceptable financial burden for independent retailers in every town and city in Northern Ireland who are already paying the highest business rates in the UK.

"For many of our members, staff who challenge these shoplifters have been subjected to threats and on occasion violence. No staff member should have to tolerate such abuse.

"We also appreciate the pressures that the PSNI are under with reduced budgets and numbers of officers patrolling town and city centres.

"Retail NI wants to see an incoming Justice Minister urgently review the law when it comes to shoplifting. The current policy of a fixed penalty notice of £80 for offenders up to the value of £100 shoplifting is clearly not working."


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