Warning as Christmas gifts stolen as delivery drivers leave them in dodgy places

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Hundreds of Christmas gifts are being stolen by thieves as delivery drivers leave them in dodgy places.

Online shoppers are falling prey to “porch piracy” as couriers come under huge pressure to drop scores of presents each shift.

Anne Pardoe, from Citizens Advice, which estimates 600 parcels are being swiped every hour, said: “The fault ultimately lies with the criminals, but it’s exacerbated by the pressure delivery drivers are under to deliver high volumes each day. This often means parcels are left in unsafe locations.”

There has been a huge rise in internet shopping over the last two years, with some workers expected to deliver more than 250 parcels a shift.



The practice has been branded "porch piracy"
The practice has been branded “porch piracy”

One driver, paid by each successful delivery, claimed to have “tried everything to deliver the parcel”, including storage boxes, sheds, neighbours.

He added: “It was not always safe but you’d be tempted to leave it anyway.”

Molly Ceglowski, 36, of west London, said she was at home when a box containing a birthday dress for her four-year-old daughter was left on the doorstep – and then pinched within minutes of it being delivered.

She said: “I got the email at 6.37pm and by 6.41pm it had disappeared.”

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Thames Valley Police last week urged neighbours to “keep an eye out for each other”, after a string of doorstep thefts in Windsor, Berks.

An Amazon spokesman said: “The vast majority make it to customers without issue. In the rare case something occurs, we work with customers to make it right.”