Home Business News Two pickpocket thefts occur every hour in Westminster

Two pickpocket thefts occur every hour in Westminster

by LLB Reporter
25th Jul 23 6:04 am

New British Transport Police data has revealed that Westminster is, by far, the London borough with the highest number of pickpocket offences.

Westminster had over 20,000 reported incidents in the past year, equating to two thefts every hour. Triple the number of reports in Camden in second place (5,300) and Southwark in third place (4,200):

  • Westminster- 20,871
  • Camden- 5,301
  • Southwark- 4,287
  • Kensington & Chelsea- 2,962
  • Islington- 2,820
  • Harrington- 3,160
  • Lambeth- 2,591
  • Haringey- 1,894

Westminster’s figures have shot up dramatically in the past two years, with levels nearly twice what they were in January 2021. At the height of the pandemic, the crime was almost non-existent in the borough, with only 100 pickpocketing incidents reported in Westminster in February 2021.

The data collated by London criminal defence solicitors, Lawtons, also revealed the London underground lines with the most reported pickpocket thefts.

The number of pickpocket thefts on the London Underground has more than doubled since 2021, reaching a record high of 7,899 thefts in 2022. Last year, there were over 1,200 pickpocket thefts reported on the Central line, making it London’s worst-hit tube line. The Northern line ranked second, with more than 1,100 thefts.

According to Transport for London levels of train-related theft are higher than pre-pandemic rates. Some 50% of robberies are committed on trains, with 23% on platforms and 7% at station entrances and exits. Fridays are the most common day for offences to occur and thefts are least likely on Thursdays.

Nick Titchener, criminal defence solicitor at London law firm Lawtons Solicitors, said, “Pickpocketing covers theft of items directly from the victim, but without the use of physical force and so easily accessible items like mobile phones and wallets tend to be the most targeted.

“It’s important to ensure you’re not a target for opportunistic thieves when swept up in the crowds. As summer approaches, London will see an influx of tourists, making it easier for pickpockets to target people. Keep an eye on your bags and any other valuables and be vigilant around other passengers.

“It’s important that victims and witnesses contact the police as soon as the robbery occurs – the first hour after the incident takes place can be critical to catching the suspect. Reporting the incident and cancelling your cards can help your cause in these circumstances”

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