THE owners of a new pawn broking store in Ulladulla have dismissed concerns that it will lead to an increase in crime.
Ulladulla Pawnbrokers opened earlier this month at the top of town on the Princes Highway.
One long-term resident said she was “appalled” it had been allowed to happen.
“As we know when you place a shop of this kind in a town with high unemployment the cost to the local community will be devastating,” she told the Times.
“There will be a spike in the crime rate and young people losing their possessions due to the high interest rates.”
The owners of the store, who also operate South Coast Pawnbrokers in Nowra, say it will not provide an outlet for people to sell stolen goods.
Since taking over the Nowra business 12 months ago, they say they have only come across a couple of stolen items.
Anyone leaving goods at the new Ulladulla store will need to provide 100 points of identification including something with their photo on it, something with their address on it, something with their date of birth on it and something with their signature on it.
The information is recorded on the store’s computer system and uploaded daily to the NSW Police Service.
The store also records the serial number of any item that passes over the counter and in the case of jewellery, any unique markings.
This information is also provided to the police.
The store is fitted with a number of surveillance cameras making it impossible for anyone trading in stolen goods to get away undetected.
Second hand items purchased by the store are kept for 14 days to provide police with enough time to check they haven’t been stolen.
The owners say individual staff members and the business a whole face significant fines for failing to keep the necessary records as required under State Government legislation.
The Pawnbrokers and Second-Hand Dealers Act 1996 (the Act) aims to reduce the trade in stolen goods by providing a licensing regime with record keeping and proof of identity requirements.
Victims of theft have been invited to contact the Ulladulla store on (02) 4454 2806 with a description of the stolen items.
The owners say this will attach the description to their noticeboard and do their best to help return any stolen goods to their rightful owner.