£30,000 raid at Ann Summers shop

113897-5333 ANN SUMMERS (CS) MRW 2/11/2011''The Ann Summers shop in Commercial Road Portsmouth - the scene of a recent break-in through the rear area'''Picture: Malcolm Wells (113897-5333)
113897-5333 ANN SUMMERS (CS) MRW 2/11/2011''The Ann Summers shop in Commercial Road Portsmouth - the scene of a recent break-in through the rear area'''Picture: Malcolm Wells (113897-5333)
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BURGLARS have stolen £30,000 of goods from the Ann Summers adult shop in Portsmouth city centre.

Police believe crooks who cleared out the front of the shop will try to sell on their haul as gifts during the festive period.

The gang smashed their way in through the back of the shop in Commercial Road in a late-night raid.

Once inside they piled security tagged underwear and corsets into boxes, virtually clearing out the front of the store.

Detective Constable Lee Parker said: ‘At this time of year people are on the look out for Christmas presents for friends and loved ones.

‘It is likely that the offenders will try to sell these items on or pass them on as gifts.

‘I would urge anyone who is offered any of these items for sale to contact the police.’

The burglar in this CCTV image (left) released by police wore gloves in a bid to cover his tracks.

Two other crooks are pictured at the back of the image during the raid between 11pm on Saturday and 6.30am on Sunday.

The gang fled through the back of the store.

Det Con Parker added: ‘This appears to have been an organised operation carried out at night with very few people around to witness what happened, or disturb them.

‘At this time it is not known whether it is a one off or part of a larger series of burglaries taking place, however, this is something we are looking in to.

‘If anyone say anything suspicious please get in touch with us.

‘It appears that a lot of the stolen items were security tagged. If anybody is offered any of these items for sale please contact the police. ‘

Call Det Con Parker at Southsea station on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Store manager Laura Harrison, 31, said CCTV revealed the gang were in the store for about four hours.

Miss Harrison discovered the break-in on her arrival to open up the store at about 10.20am on Sunday.

She said: ‘The shop was virutally empty. Every fixture was empty. couldn’t believe it. I knew I had shut the door the night before and unlocked it to get in the next morning. We had a bit of a panic because we thought they might still be there.

‘They have even angle grinded our safe open. We had had a pick-up that day so there was about £2,000 in there.

‘They knew what they were doing.