Spotlight on Burglaries: Addictions to drugs, booze driving burglaries

By March 21, 2017 Recent News

Stuff 20 March 2017
In part two of our ‘Spotlight on Burglaries’ campaign, we take a look at why burglaries are committed and what the thieves are after.

Burglary numbers are increasingly being driven by some offenders’ addictions to drugs and alcohol.

The attraction of burglary lies in the availability of “quick cash” in many victims’ homes, Inspector Bruce O’Brien says.

“They’re stealing phones or cameras, not because they want them, but because they want to sell it and make quick cash.”

Those items are often in trend and usually sought after, he says. They can be anything from the latest iPhone to headphones left lying around the house or car.

Stolen items are often appearing on Facebook ‘buy-and-sell’ pages, O’Brien says.

It’s becoming easier to access the pages with Facebook’s ‘marketplace’ feature just a finger touch away on the mobile app.

“We monitor those sites, we get a lot of information from the community about what’s being sold.

“They can also appear on TradeMe … they have their own investigations unit too.”

The proceeds will then go toward feeding offenders’ addictions. But “a percentage” also do it to help support family and parts of their lifestyle.

O’Brien says the types of drugs vary from methamphetamine, cannabis, synthetic cannabis and similar drugs.
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