Woman caught on camera stealing flowers multiple times from outside B.C. business

Click to play video 'Flower theft caught on camera at South Surrey restaurant' Flower theft caught on camera at South Surrey restaurant
Restaurants and businesses are already struggling during the pandemic and in south Surrey, they're also battling repeat COVID-19 petty crime in the form of flower thefts captured on camera.

Restaurants are already struggling to make ends meet during the COVID-19 pandemic but one B.C. restaurant is also dealing with another financial problem.

A Surrey business was shocked to discover its colourful flowers kept going missing from its patio.

The Afghan Kitchen on 24 Avenue is a family-run business and while its popularity keeps growing, one woman has become a pest.

Surveillance video shows a woman pulling up in a car outside the closed restaurant, walking up to the patio, picking up the potted plants and putting them in her car.

“It was quite actually surprising to see somebody dressed so nicely and coming out in the middle of the night to steal plants,” Hassib Sarwari from the Afghan Kitchen told Global News.

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He said the same woman has now been seen stealing their plants three times this summer.

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“It was unfortunate and very very disappointing that we have to be dealing with this issue at this time,” he added.

Read more: Man caught on video yelling, swearing at restaurant staff in B.C.

The incidents were reported to Surrey RCMP and Sarwari said they have opened a file on the matter. Surrey RCMP did not respond to Global News’ request for comment Saturday.

However, when the restaurant shared the footage on its Facebook page, a neighbouring business came forward saying it had also been losing its favourite flowers.

Wild Birds Unlimited has also had its colourful blooms stolen from its patio.

On July 25 in the middle of the night, a woman with a shopping cart raided the planter outside.

“She cleaned the whole thing out,” owner Cathy Steele said. “Yeah, it’s a shame.”

It is not yet known if the flower thief is the same person at both locations but the business owners are hoping someone will be able to identify them.

“We try to take care of our stores, especially now. It’s stressful for everybody and then to have somebody take your plants, it’s pretty tacky,” Steele said.

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Global News has reached out to RCMP Sunday.

-with files from Julia Foy