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4 Vietnamese indicted for repeated shoplifting in Japan

4 Vietnamese indicted for repeated shoplifting in Japan

Monday, March 11, 2024, 11:12 GMT+7
4 Vietnamese indicted for repeated shoplifting in Japan
Stolen Uniqlo clothing confiscated by police in a shoplifting case involving four Vietnamese individuals in Japan. Photo: Fukuoka prefectural police

Four Vietnamese men and women have been indicted on charges of theft after allegedly repeatedly shoplifting at casual clothing giant Uniqlo and other clothing shops in Japan, The Yomiuri Shimbun reported on Saturday.

On February 7, Kyodo News reported that the four people, in their 30s and 40s, were arrested on suspicion of involvement in 67 incidents across Tokyo and seven prefectures, including Osaka and Fukuoka.

They are believed to have stolen 5,237 items during multiple visits to Japan between December 2018 and October 2023, causing losses estimated at around 20 million yen (US$135,000).

According to police, the four claimed to have come to Japan to resolve difficult living conditions in their hometown due to debt and illness.

The group said they were solicited by a ringleader who offered them large remuneration, telling them “Japan is an easy place to shoplift.”

They were taught stealing techniques in Vietnam by the ringleader, who made the arrangements for them to travel as a group to Japan.

“My husband is ill and unable to work, so my parents and child all depend on my income,” The Yomiuri Shimbun quoted one of the four members as saying at their first hearing at the Fukuoka District Court on February 26. 

“I also needed money to pay for an operation for myself.”

She added that while she earned 50,000 yen ($340) a month as a fruit vendor in Vietnam, her child quit high school because she could not pay the tuition.

The Fukuoka prefectural police, who apprehended the four individuals, have also obtained an arrest warrant for a woman in her 40s who lives in Vietnam, suspecting that she was giving instructions to the four, Kyodo News reported.

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Tuoi Tre News


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