A police force has reported more than 8,000 shoplifting offences since 2017.

Hertfordshire Constabulary saw a 6% increase in incidents of shoplifting in 2017-18, compared with the previous year.

Data derived from data.police.uk and compiled by OnBuy.com showed that during that period, the Herts Force recorded 8,142 separate incidents, ranking them 19 out of 42 across England and Wales.

Shoplifting is defined by the police as the “theft from shops or stalls” and research by the British Retail Consortium showed that shoplifting accounted for £500 million (71%) of the £700 million direct cost incurred from retail crime in the UK between April 2016 to March 2017.

The Metropolitan Police recorded the highest number of incidents between 2017 to 2018: 46,840 – the equivalent of 128 a day.

Cas Paton, managing director of OnBuy.com, said: “The findings from this research are intriguing. With the overall number of shoplifting incidents increasing from the previous year, it’s a crime which is financially burdening retailers.

“It’s unfortunate because many owners spend a lot of time, money and energy ensuring all aspects of their operations are running effectively and efficiently.

“Whilst shoplifting may seem difficult to prevent, there are certain cost-effective precautions retailers can take to deter shoplifters from targeting them such as training employees to identify the behaviours associated with shoplifters and appropriate signage to warn potential offenders about the seriousness of the matter”.

For more information, visit https://www.onbuy.com/

Watford Observer: