B.C. civil forfeiture claim reveals elaborate scheme of shoplifting, returns for cash and fake credit cards
Authorities allege a Vancouver man was engaged in an elaborate fencing scheme that employed shoplifters and targeted large chain stores like Home Depot, Walmart and Best Buy.
Under the scheme, the man would bring stolen goods, including computers, electronics, home improvement items and clothing, to various stores without a receipt in return for store credit. He would then use those credits to buy merchandise and receive a receipt and later return those items for cash.
After receiving tips from retailers, Vancouver police deployed an undercover officer posing as a shoplifter who sold merchandise to the man and who received instructions to steal property from Home Depot.
The details of these allegations stem from four investigations dating to 2017 and are contained in court documents related to a civil forfeiture application seeking to keep items the VPD seized from two residences. They include more than $50,000 in cash, two vehicles and gift cards worth more than $120,000 from several large retailers.