SHOPLIFTING continues to be a problem in Cork City, despite the Covid-19 lockdown.
That is according to the owner of the Centra shop on Oliver Plunkett St, Kevin Herlihy.
Mr Herlihy was speaking after the publication of Garda figures by the Central Statistics Office which showed that there were 1,266 recorded shoplifting incidents in Cork City last year.
Despite many premises being closed because of Covid-19 restrictions, the number of shoplifting incidents had fallen by just 367 from the 1,633 incidents reported in 2019.
Mr Herlihy said: “Shoplifting is still very prevalent.
“Pretty much anything is being taken, although mainly food.”
“It certainly continues to be an issue — although it is not the biggest issue.”
He said that anti-social behaviour and drug-taking continue to be problematic in the city centre.
Shops targeted by shop-lifters typically include discount stores, supermarkets, and pharmacies.
Shoplifting items from department stores for sale on the black market has long helped provide funds for addicts.
However, not everything is being shoplifted for sale as items such as food are typically stolen by people desperate to find something to eat.
Last week, a man was sentenced to five months in prison for shoplifting in Cork City.
He put items into a shopping bag in the supermarket and passed all points of payment without stopping to pay.
The court was told that he had left the store with €75 worth of goods, which were not recovered.
Earlier this month, a woman was jailed for ten months after she and an accomplice stole almost €2,000 worth of items from a pharmacy in the city.
In another recent case, a man was given a four-month sentence after stealing from a shop twice in one day.
The man stole alcohol on both occasions.
Also in recent weeks, a man was given a suspended sentence for two shoplifting offences, after the court was told that he had paid back the worth of the items and was also involved in fundraising for charity.