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Distraction Thieves Strike After Following Jewelers in Manhattan, JSA Reports

The jewelers had all been on Canal Street.

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The Jewelers’ Security Alliance has reported on thefts in which jewelers were followed from Canal Street in Manhattan, NY.

On Nov. 28, suspects stole a jeweler’s backpack containing rings in the Canal Street subway station at 2:10 p.m. The victim put his bag on the ground as he tried to remove a MetroCard from his wallet, according to JSA. The female suspect then told him he had dropped some money. After the jeweler picked up the cash, he realized that his backpack had been replaced by a bag he didn’t recognize, JSA reports.

And on Oct. 27, two jewelers returning to Great Neck, Long Island, from Canal Street were unloading their bags when some men distracted them and switched one of their bags.

On Nov. 10, a jeweler returning to Queens from Canal Street also had a bag switched, according to JSA.

JSA offers these recommendations:

It is an old trick to tell a jeweler that he has dropped money on the ground, and then to take the jeweler’s bag. When carrying product, jewelers need to be skeptical of all strangers who talk to them which could be a distraction attempt.

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When leaving sales calls jewelers must be alert for anyone following them. Whether the jeweler is in a car or on foot, it is wise to take evasive action, driving or walking in opposite directions, making U-turns and making abrupt changes in direction and movements to see if you are being followed.

Jewelers must know where their bags are at all times and must have control of those bags.

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