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Moment thief steals two baby tortoises right under pet shop staff’s noses

This is the moment a brazen thief steals two baby Hermann’s tortoises from a pet shop and stuffs them in their pockets.

CCTV footage shows the masked shoplifter, who was using crutches, opening the tank’s door and snatching the reptiles just as two shoppers appear in the aisle.

They don’t take notice and peruse an adjacent container, giving the tortoise-snatcher just enough time to finish the job and make their escape.

Staff at the Swell Aquatic and Reptile Centre in Hyde, Greater Manchester, say security footage showed the thief walking out through the front door.

Now they are appealing for eyewitnesses or anyone with information on the theft – carried out last Thursday at 12.10pm – to come forward.

They fear for the tortoises safety, as they have no idea if the person who now has them is giving them the right diet, heating and lighting they need to survive.

Store manager Stephen Bradley told ‘It’s quite a busy shop so they waited until there was no staff looking – they only needed a few seconds.

‘Everybody’s frustrated because a lot of them were on site at the time. Hindsight’s always a good thing. Everyone’s kicking themselves a little bit.

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