Depher CIC UK: Founder and Pride of Britain winner James Anderson posts 'heartbreaking' footage of thieves stealing from his Burnley charity shop
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Police are investigating after two people stole aftershave worth around £50 on Monday from Depher CIC UK in Keirby Walk, which raises money for hard-up families.
Founder James (55) said it was “heart-breaking” to see footage of the pair hiding the cologne bottle behind baby supplies they had received for free at his store.The dad-of-six said: “They’re taking food off a child’s table.
“It’s just heartbreaking knowing that someone can come in, ask for support, and we’ve given them it with an open heart, and then he steals from us.
“We could have sold that and the money we make off that would then buy food, which then can be used to put on the table of a child or an adult or vulnerable person.
“It beggars belief, and it’s just so wrong on every single level.”
James said his wife Barbara was manning the shop, where people can pick up baby supplies, dried foods and sanitary products, when the thieves struck.
Staff had given the men several children’s sanitary items for free after they said they were receiving child benefit allowance.
But while one of the men distracted Barbara, another picked up the aftershave and tucked it behind a pack of wipes he’d been given before walking out of the store.
James said: “You’re allowed a packet of nappies, a packet of wipes and some sanitary products. That’s every two weeks until the cost of living crisis is over.
“So we gave him a packet of nappies and a packet of baby wipes for free.
“They were having a walk around and seeing what is what inside the shop, and on the right-hand side we have a lot of food.
“The eldest gentleman with the blue jacket reached into the front shop window and pulled a box of after-shave out and walked around with it for a bit.
“The staff didn’t think any of it. They were nice, and he said thank you for the nappies and thanked them for the support, and then put it down.
“But he then distracted the shopworker, who is my wife Barbara, so she wouldn’t notice the young guy pick it up and put it behind the wipes that we gave him for free.
“He then turned to the left and walked out of the shop. It was about £50 worth of aftershave. It was a big bottle. But we weren’t selling it for that amount.”
He added: “You don’t go into a charity shop, ask for that help, receive it with an open heart and then steal from the same shop. It’s just not right.
“But it is what it is. And we can’t tarnish everyone with the same brush. So we’ve just got to carry on.”