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Chinese Goldfish and Koi Carp among fish grabbed
9:00am Saturday 21st July 2012 in Bradford
Hundreds of fish thought to be worth more than £20,000 were stolen from a Bradford pet shop.
More than 460 Koi Carp and 30 Chinese Goldfish were taken from Newlyn Pets in Whitehall Road, Wyke .
Among the stolen fish was a three-foot Koi Carp called Charlie, valued at £10,000, which had belonged to the shop’s owner for more than 20 years.
A 30-inch Koi, valued at around £2,000, was also taken during the break-in, which occurred early on Tuesday.
The Chinese Goldfish have been valued at between £30 and £300 each.
The thieves are understood to have entered the store after disabling a sensor to prevent a burglar alarm from sounding.
Fish were also taken from an outside pond.
Gary Smith, chairman of the Professional Koi Dealers Association, said he thought the fish would have been stolen to order and it was unlikely they would be sold on the open market.
He said: “It’s quite unusual for a shop to be broken into. It’s more common for people who keep fish in their back gardens to have them stolen than for them to be taken from dealers.
“It’s become more common since the invention of Google Earth which allows people to see where there are ponds in back gardens.
“The fish may have a high value attached to them but they are only worth what someone will pay for them.
“The fact that they have been stolen will reduce their value. Most Koi dealers wouldn’t buy in second-hand koi because of the risk of infection.”
Councillor David Warburton (Lab, Wyke) said: “It’s very distressing for the owner and I know the police will make every effort to trace these animals.
“I know often Koi Carp can be identified by their markings. I hope the police will be able to support the owner and catch the perpetrators.”
Police are appealing for witnesses and information from anyone who may have been offered the fish for sale or who knows where they are.
Anyone with information should call Spen Neighbourhood Policing team on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.
The shop’s owner did not wish to comment.