Young boy used to steal mobile phone at shop

Updated: 

Police have released CCTV footage of a young boy being used to steal a mobile phone at a candle shop.

The 16-second clip shows the boy, believed to be about five years old, and a man at the shop in Bromley, south-east London.

Officers were called to The Candle Shop in The Glades shopping centre at 4.50pm on August 30.

In the footage, a man is seen standing by the till and distracting the shop assistant by pretending to want a candle.

He moves from side to side as the young boy goes behind the counter, takes the shop assistant's phone and tries to open the till.

Both the boy and the man are then seen leaving the shop with the phone, a Samsung Galaxy S7.

Police Constable Ben Briselden, of the Metropolitan Police, said: "We are keen to identify the man in the CCTV footage who appears to use the child in their care to steal from those working in a candle shop.

Police want to speak to this man in connection with the mobile phone theft
Police want to speak to this man in connection with the mobile phone theft (Met Police/PA)

"We would also urge anyone who witnessed the incident to contact us."

The man is described as a large white man, aged in his mid 30s, 5ft 7ins tall, with short brown hair and a beard.

He was wearing a brown hat, brown jacket, blue jeans and black shoes.

The boy is described as white, with short brown hair. He was wearing a blue coat and dark trousers.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police added: "No arrests have been made and inquiries continue."

Anyone with information is asked to contact the force on 101 or by tweeting @MetCC. Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.