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Bling bandits on a tear in Surrey and Delta
Surrey RCMP has now joined the hunt for a pair of thieves taking jewelry from women over the last month.
On Aug. 13, a heavy-set South Asian or Middle-Eastern woman with gold teeth approached another woman and tried to put some fake jewelry on her.
During the exchange, the large woman stole two bracelets from the woman being targeted.
The thief then got into a car and took off.
Then, on Aug. 30, what is believed to be the same woman approached an elderly Asian woman with a similar scheme, and then took her necklace.
Police say the thefts occurred in the Whalley and Newton areas.
And on Aug. 31 in North Delta, a 75-year-old woman was unloading groceries from her car when a woman fitting the above description asked her for directions to Surrey Memorial Hospital.
Seemingly grateful for the help, the heavy-set woman handed the Delta senior a necklace.
When she reached for it, the woman grabbed her other hand and pulled a ring with seven one-carat diamonds from her finger.
The thief fled to a waiting vehicle with a man in the driver's seat, and the pair sped off in the grey, four-door car.
The Delta senior's family is offering a $5,000 reward for anyone with information that leads to the recovery of the stolen ring.
After this series of thefts, police are looking for a man and a woman, both dark-skinned and between 45 and 55 years old. The man has short dark hair and a goatee, and the woman is heavy-set with long, curly dark hair.
They are driving a grey, four-door sedan.
"I'm happy to report so far it's just victims being overwhelmed and distracted with no violence or threats of violence," said Surrey RCMP Cpl. Bert Paquet. "But we definitely want to make sure we catch them before this happens."
Police remind the public of the following tips:
• Use discretion when wearing expensive or valuable jewelry in public;
• If approached by someone you don’t know, be skeptical of their claims and watch your belongings;
• Clearly tell the person that you are not interested and to leave you alone;
• If continually pressed, draw attention to the situation and call for help;
• Call 911 immediately after the incident to report it to the police;
• Try to observe the direction of travel of the suspect.
Anyone with information about these thefts is asked to call the Delta Police at 604-946-4411, Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).