Officers remain committed to supporting the retail sector and tackling shoplifting - a police chief has said, after a significant increase in the offence in Flintshire.

ONS data for the year ending September 2023 showed the total number of crimes recorded in Wrexham was 13,326 - a reduction of 14 per cent on the previous year.

And for Flintshire, that figure was 11,239, a reduction of 12 per cent on the previous year.

Of the above totals for the year ending September 2023, 1,449 were for shoplifting in Wrexham (an increase of seven per cent), and 918 were for shoplifting in Flintshire (an increase of 47 per cent).

Superintendent Jon Bowcott said: “Tackling retail crime is a priority in North Wales and we will continue to support that by robustly dealing with offenders.

“Offences have increased in some areas of North Wales, which is reflective of a national trend.

“Since the launch of the national Retail Crime Action Plan, which aims to improve the policing response to retail theft, we have seen an increase in the number of people being charged, cautioned, or being dealt with by tackling the underlying causes of their offending over the past four months, and we are detecting a greater number of crimes.

“North Wales Police also consistently performs well nationally for the number of shoplifting offenders who have been brought to justice.

“However, despite some recorded increases in shoplifting offences in some areas, Wrexham city has seen a reduction in incidents, which reflects the hard work officers are putting in to tackle retail theft with a number of offenders being charged with multiple offences."

The data for the year ending September 2023 also showed an 11 per cent increase in general theft offences for Flintshire on the previous year.

By comparison, Wrexham saw a four per cent decrease.


Supt Bowcott added: “We are committed to supporting the retail sector and are continuing to work with local businesses to seek to reduce the number of offences that occur.

"High visibility foot patrols are carried out and plain clothes officers regularly patrol our town centres by visiting hotspot stores and looking out for those intent on committing offences.

"We also have a team of ‘We Don’t Buy Crime’ officers, with additional training in crime prevention, who visit affected businesses and provide crime prevention advice and packs with signage.

“The impact of shoplifting on businesses can not be underestimated and it is not a victimless crime. Not only can it have a detrimental impact on staff, but the cost of theft also inevitably gets passed on to other members of the public.

“We will continue to identify offenders and bring them before the courts.”