Abbotsford Police warning residents about group of jewelry thieves

A roving band of jewelry thieves targeting seniors has returned to the community, warn Abbotsford Police.

In two instances last week, two older men had their jewelry stolen after being approached on the street, said Const. Ian MacDonald.

On May 22, an 85-year-old man was walking in the 30600 block of Blueridge Drive at 1:30 p.m. when a woman got out a vehicle to talk with him.

She had the man start try on various pieces of fake jewelry as a distraction before leaving.

The man then discovered that his 22-karat gold ring had been stolen in process, said MacDonald.

A second man, 70, was approached by a male suspect at 1:45 p.m. in the 2500 block of East Bourquin Crescent on Saturday.

The suspect again had the victim try on several pieces of fake jewelry before making off with the senior’s gold necklace and bracelet valued at just under $5,000, said MacDonald.

In both incidents, the group of suspects was described as a one woman and two men travelling in a black sedan.

Two similar incidents took place in Abbotsford in mid-April, said MacDonald.

However, at that time the suspect and vehicle descriptions varied.

Investigators believe a ring of thieves are working together and are responsible for a number of thefts across the Lower Mainland, said MacDonald.

“We think it’s a larger group . . . that is mobile and moves from community to community,” he said.

Vancouver police have also advised residents to be wary after a string of similar incidents.

The suspects probably leave victims with pieces of fake jewelry, so if they are caught, the thieves can suggest it was a trade rather than a robbery, noted MacDonald.

“Legitimate sales or trades don’t happen from car windows,” he said.

“If people are approaching you on the street and mentioning anything about jewelry, that’s a red flag.”

Anyone with information or witnessing suspicious activity should call the Abbotsford Police Department at 604-859-5225