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130+ arrests, nearly $37K worth of items recovered in second VPD shoplifting crackdown

The anti-shoplifting blitz lasted two weeks.
The Vancouver Police Department is revealing the results of Project Barcode 2, a continuation of a campaign targeting chronic and violent shoplifters.

Police in Vancouver are revealing the results of a second campaign targeting some of the city's chronic and violent shoplifters.

The recent operation by the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) called Project Barcode 2 is a continuation of a three-week anti-shoplifting blitz that happened in March when Vancouver police officers worked with local businesses to identify and arrest chronic and violent offenders. 

During the second police crackdown, which took place between April 24 and May 9, undercover VPD officers recovered $36,540.83 worth of allegedly stolen goods, arrested 138 people including 14 repeat offenders, seized 12 weapons (knives were the most common), and recommended 125 criminal charges to Crown counsel. 

"Violence and retail crime is still a major concern in Vancouver," says VPD Cnst. Tania Visintin. "Someone going to work to earn a living should not have to be subjected to this type of violence.”

Following the first anti-shoplifting campaign, the VPD observed that mid-sized businesses like London Drugs and grocery stores, dollar stores, and clothing retailers were among the most targeted by shoplifters.

While shoplifting incidents remain under-reported, the number of retail thefts in Vancouver increased by more than 30 per cent in 2022 in comparison to the previous year. On average, over 20 violent shoplifting incidents were reported to the VPD each month in 2022.