Home News Supermarket thief targets bags, phones that customers leave in shopping trolleys

Supermarket thief targets bags, phones that customers leave in shopping trolleys

Despite having served jail time, Goh Swee Tian couldn't stop himself from stealing valuables from distracted shoppers




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Singapore — It seems like it’s hard to unlearn bad behaviour after all.

Goh Swee Tian (53) was released from prison after five years of corrective training since 2014, but a difficult life made him turn back to his old ways soon after.

This time, Goh targeted the valuables that customers left unattended in their shopping trolleys.

While customers were busy shopping and were distracted, Goh moved quickly to grab their bags and wallets.

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In Jan 2018 at NTUC FairPrice Finest Tiong Bahru, Goh managed to nab a customer’s bag containing a S$500 Gucci wallet, an Apple iPhone, several credit cards, S$400 as well as cash in several other currencies.

Goh then used the credit card to buy a 999 gold bracelet worth S$3,205.

In March 2018 at Giant supermarket VivoCity, Goh was able to steal an S$800 iPhone 7 and an OCBC Frank Visa credit card from another customer.

Then, he bought an iPhone X worth S$1,888 and a case worth S$29 using the stolen credit card.

Continuing his spree, Goh returned to the VivoCity supermarket in April 2018 and stole a Hermes handbag. The bag contained a Chanel wallet with credit cards and cash in different currencies, worth about S$2,450.

Again, Goh bought a S$1,888 iPhone X using the credit card.

In May 2018 at NTUC FairPrice in Marine Parade, Goh then stole a handbag containing a Lacoste wallet, a Google Pixel XL phone, cash in different currencies and multiple credit cards. He bought two iPhone X sets worth S$3,776 using the card.

Goh committed 59 offences in the span of six months from Nov 2017 to May 2018. The total losses amounted to S$30,427 according to court documents.

He pleaded guilty to 17 charges of theft and cheating.

According to a report by Channel News Asia, Goh’s lawyer asked for five years jail and argued that Goh “picked [the items] up by chance” with no premeditation.

Goh also appears to have committed the offences to raise funds for his wife’s medical expenses during a time when he was not paid any salary by his employer.

On Wednesday (Aug 28), Goh was sentenced to six years corrective training which aims to reform his behaviour and help him reintegrate into society. -/TISG

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