Major rise in jewel raids

Shops see three times the number of jewellery raids - and three staff killed - as gold price soars

RAIDS on jewellery stores have soared in the past five years as the price of gold has rocketed - and it has led one shop to fit anti-theft sprays to identify the raiders.

There have been three times the number of jewellery store raids as five years ago, rising from 248 in 2006 to 716 in 2011 and last year the number of armed raids rose 25% to 369.

Three jewellers were also killed in separate raids last year.

At the Bobigny 2 shopping centre in Ile-de-France the Version Or jeweller has fitted an anti-raid spray after five thefts in two years - including one last November where thieves used teargas on staff.

The spray can be used in the case of a raid to cover the attacker in an invisible fluid which contains a tracer visible under ultraviolet light and a unique DNA code. It leaves traces on the skin and clothing for up to 120 days after the raid - and gives police proof of involvement.