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action on charity bag theft

action on charity bag theft action on charity bag theft

A special desk has been set up within the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau to tackle charity bag fraud, something of an obsession here at P Investigate.

A City of London Police spokesman said: Organised crime gangs are making millions by stealing second hand clothes donated to or destined for UK charities and selling them on Eastern European high streets.

In recent months it has emerged how charity shops are being badly hit as bags of clothes donated to them are being removed from the pavement before the legitimate collectors arrive.

In other cases fraudsters provide collection bags that appear to be from legitimate charities but take the donations to sell abroad.

Weve long done our bit to expose these crooks, who nearly always turn out to be Lithuanian nationals working for organisations based in east London or Essex.

Last December we identified one of the hotspots on an industrial estate in Benfleet.

At a special conference this week, the City of London Police and the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau explained what they are doing to tackle the menace. The City of London Police are running a major investigation, we are told.

Adrian Leppard, Commissioner of City of London Police, said after the meeting: Charity bag fraud is an emerging threat that is making organised crime gangs millions of pounds by exploiting societys goodwill and stealing from those helping the most vulnerable in society.

Todays event was an important stepping stone towards having a national strategy that will enable law enforcement and the charity sector to work in close partnership to tackle what is a particularly callous and cold-hearted crime.

It is also crucial for the public to play their part by checking that bags delivered to them are genuine by reading the charity number listed on the side.