The Warehouse has been accused of illegally demanding “compensation” from shoplifters it catches stealing in its stores.
The claim was made by a lawyer for two foreign tourists in Hastings District Court on Tuesday, who admitted stealing from The Warehouse in Blenheim last month.
The store issued a “civil recovery notice” to German Laura Fischer, 21, and Dutchman Jimmy Haluani, 22, demanding $275 each in recompense. Fischer’s notice said the goods she had taken were worth $11.
Don’t shoplift and then you won’t get stung for costs. I imagine it costs a lot to deal with a shoplifter – so this may just be cost recovery.
Fischer and Haluani were accused of being part of a shoplifting gang that stole $1200 of clothing, electrical gear, outdoor equipment and groceries from six Blenheim stores, of which The Warehouse was one.
They appeared in court in Hastings because they are in Hawke’s Bay picking fruit.
Cressey asked the judge to take the $275 payments made to The Warehouse into consideration if he was going to fine the pair.
But Judge Courtney said the “brazen” nature of their offending meant it warranted more than a fine, and sentenced each to 100 hours of community work.
So it wasn’t just an $11 item nicked.