Four people have been charged after the Vancouver Police arrested a group of men and women in relation to an on-going investigation into distraction thefts.

On April 23rd, police issued a warning about a group of bandits distracting unsuspecting elderly victims by placing fake gold jewellery around their wrists and necks. The thieves then removed the victim’s own necklaces, rings and bracelets, and drove off in a waiting car.

On May 28th, police arrested four suspects after they allegedly distracted a 72 year old Vancouver man and stole his jewellery.

Two Surrey residents, 39 year old Felix Calin and 38 year old Lucica Calin, along with 24 year old Catalin Gunici and 23 year old Marioara Mustana of no fixed address, have each been charged with theft over $5000 and fraud over $5000. 

Police are working on identifying and arresting other groups believed to be operating throughout the Lower Mainland. All of these groups function in a similar manner by creating a disturbance to distract the victims and using sleight of hand to dupe them out of their jewellery. They often try to sell jewellery they claim is real gold, placing cheap necklaces and bracelets on the victims and removing their real jewellery.

The Vancouver Police Department would like to remind residents to be alert and report suspicious persons or activity to police.

Safety Tips

  • be cautious of strangers offering jewellery for sale on the street
  • be aware of your surroundings at all times
  • travel along well-lit streets
  • know where you’re going and walk with a sense of purpose with your head up high
  • keep your purse and belongings close to your body so they aren’t easily grabbed