Charity bin thieves caught on camera

A woman takes items from charity bins located in Kensington
A woman takes items from charity bins located in Kensington

So fed up are residents, they provided The Gazette with photographic evidence of the crimes in progress.

Good Samaritan Industries, Salvation Army, the Spine and Limb Foundation and an environmental charity own the bins in Kensington.

Concerned resident Phillip, who did not want his surname published, said he has witnessed several incidents of stealing from charity bins.

�I saw a young woman in her twenties approach the bins and she started picking out whatever she wanted and left what she didn�t want on the curb,� Phillip said.

�She then threw the items she wanted in her car, saw me and I told her she was stealing, she swore at me and then she casually wandered off to the park to meet a friend.�

Phillip and other residents said they have reported the incidents to the City of South Perth and were visited by rangers who said the issue was causing concern.

�The ranger looked at the mess and was really concerned and said he would send someone to clean it up,� Phillip said.

�The problem is that these bins do help the poor and disadvantaged, but this stealing and trashing of bins is happening all around Perth.

�I don�t know why logic hasn�t prevailed and they just don�t put them next to the Police Station, then people wouldn�t touch them,� he said.

The charities previously told The Gazette theft and vandalism had cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses, money better directed at helping people in need.

Phillip said the two incidents he photographed happened as recently as Friday, July 24 and the evening of Tuesday, July 28, but there have been many recent incidents.

�I saw this guy on a scooter with a bucket filling it with items and I asked him what he was doing and he told me to mind my own business and that he wasn�t stealing.

�I said then I will take a photograph of you and take it to the police and you can explain to them exactly what you are doing and he told me to �eff off.�

�This bloke had Mandurah number plates and extra cans of petrol on his scooter, so it looked like he was doing the rounds of the bins.

�I have even heard of people stealing items, washing them and selling them themselves at the markets, so the charities don�t stand a chance, this is just costing them a lot of money,� Phillip said.

Kensington Police Officer in Charge Senior Sergeant Ashley Goy said people caught stealing from charity bins can be charged with a number of offences.

�The charge is stealing because those items become the property of the charity once it is relinquished into the bin,� Snr Sgt Goy said.

�They can also be charged with other offences, including trespassing, if the bins are on land owned by certain private or government organisations,� he said.