Singapore police detained four Vietnamese nationals Sunday for allegedly stealing more than 800 items worth $19,000 at various shopping malls.
The four, two men and women each aged 26-31, appeared in court Tuesday to face charges of “shoplifting.”
The Straits Times newspaper reported that no bail was offered to the four, who are now held at Bedok Police Division. They will be back in court September 25, and could be jailed for up to seven years if found guilty.
The alleged shoplifters were caught at a hotel on Chin Swee Road a day after the police received a complaint from the manager of a retail outlet that some items had been stolen from his shop, Channel News Asia said.
The police said they are believed to have used paper bags lined with tin foil to avoid being spotted by anti-theft sensors.
This is not the first time that Vietnamese have been caught stealing in Singapore. Last May four Vietnamese were arrested for stealing high-end clothing from various shopping malls on Orchard Road, one of the busiest shopping areas on the island. They were sentenced to three years in jail each.
In 2016 five Vietnamese were jailed for three years for stealing goods worth $12,600 from the ION Orchard shopping mall.
The number of Vietnamese traveling to Singapore last year was more than 530,000, the ninth highest from any country.