ONE extremely concerned member of the public is issuing a warning to owners of smartphone and mobile devices like tablets etc. to be on guard as thieves now have the major incentive to snatch their belongings especially around this time of year.
The VOICE was told exclusively about an incident which was witnessed first-hand by a shopper who will remain unnamed for her own protection.
According to the eye-witness, she was being served by a cashier at one popular clothing store in Castries when she noticed two rough and thuggish looking individuals enter the store and proceed to one of the store’s owners near her. At this point she said: “When they came near me, I even secured my handbag closer to me…that just goes to show you how shifty they looked.”
She added: “They went to the guy at the cash and they gave him two phones for him to buy from them but he told them that he didn’t want the two phones because there were numbers and buttons on them. He said he wanted those like Samsung and iPhone…those with data and touchscreens. The guys begged him to take what they had but he insisted that he didn’t want the kind they had. The guys then said ‘Okay partner, give us a couple of days and by Thursday we’ll bring some in for you’.
Our witness said after the two left the store, she looked at the store manager and said to him: “Do you know that you just sent those guys to steal people’s phones? These guys won’t be buying phones! They’re stealing them to come and sell them for you. You’re encouraging that kind of crime.” She said his response was just a smile.
She said she warned him that she would report the matter to the police which she did but she was sure that nothing was done by the lawmen as no one had contacted her since for a statement.
The witness, being a victim of phone theft herself, said she was so disgusted by what she had witnessed that she is more than willing to testify in court against the businessman if needs be.
She said as dangerous as the thieves are, business people like this one in question were even more dangerous since they were the main reason why “the thieves do what they do, because they have big time buyers”.
She said: “They need and have a market to sell the phones and it’s easy money for them. They don’t have to go begging people to give them $200, they go right to him…this guy is right there waiting for them. Something needs to be done about him because he’s a businessman portraying himself as a nice person but really, he’s dirt.”
The witness issued the warning to locals to be extremely wary of who is around them as they go about their shopping or mingle in crowds over the next few days as “these guys will stop at nothing to make that easy money”. She is hopeful that her warning will prevent many from falling victim to such predatory individuals.
According to the eye-witness it would come as no surprise to know that the businessman in this case, was not the only one getting his hands dirty. She made the point that many of the businesses in the area where he is located were owned by members of the same family or fell under one umbrella. Therefore, if one was doing it, then it was more than likely that others were also doing it. The public therefore had to be extremely vigilant and speak up if they too witnessed such acts.