NYC supermarket chain hiring security guards to combat 'whole network' of thieves

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A major New York City supermarket chain is ramping up security measures as soaring inflation has led to criminal organizations earning higher profits from engaging in retail theft.

“These people come in with the idea of stealing as much as they can to go and sell it to other people. There’s a whole network,” Gristedes CEO John Catsimatidis told “Fox & Friends First” Monday. 

Catsimatidis said the problem has only been exacerbated by New York City’s reforms to criminal prosecution and cash bail laws. He added that police and retailers’ “hands are tied” by progressive politicians pushing soft on crime policies. 

GRISTEDES CEO STEPS UP SECURITY AT STORES AMID WAVE OF SHOPLIFTING INCIDENTS

“You know what I say to these politicians? The eight and a half million people that live in New York City deserve to be safe. The 3,000 criminals deserve to be put away,” Catsimatidis told co-host Todd Piro. 

Catsimatidis also took aim at liberal District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who he described as a “nice man,” for conflating people that steal to get a meal and crime rings looking to turn a profit.  

“He believes that these people don’t deserve to get arrested, which is wrong,” Catsimatidis said.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg speaks to the press after casting his ballot in the New York City election in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., November 2, 2021. 

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg speaks to the press after casting his ballot in the New York City election in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., November 2, 2021. 
(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

The supermarket CEO said that while his businesses will likely need to spend millions of dollars on security, it will still cost less than what would have been lost in stolen goods. 

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In the week ending Feb. 6, New York City saw a 58.5% increase in petit larceny incidents, according to NYPD citywide crime statistics.

As recently as Tuesday, a man was seen stuffing cans of soda into his pants at a Trader Joe’s in Union Square before casually leaving the store, according to footage captured by the New York Post. Just one day before that, another man left the same store with a stack of 10 packages of steaks.

FOX Business’ Daniella Genovese contributed to this report. 

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