Five men are facing break-and-enter charges in connection with the Old Curio Shop in South Surrey.
Surrey RCMP were tipped off to suspicious activity on the property located in the 1400-block of King George Boulevard at 10 a.m. on Sunday, June 16.
Five men in their 30s and 40s were emerging from the shop when police arrived, resulting in their arrest. The men were later released on a promise to appear in court in September.
Barrie Cohen, the owner of the shop – well-known for its floor-to-ceiling profusion of secondhand items – died in May at the age of 72, resulting in the boarding up of the property.
Cohen’s sister, Rachel Cohen, said the incident was one of several that have occurred since her brother passed away. The property is being looted “practically on a daily basis,” she said.
In the latest, several silver items and cameras were taken.
Cohen said from New York Monday that the City of Surrey has boarded up the property and had a steel fence erected to deter the criminal element, at the family’s expense. In a June 22 email, the family was advised 24-hour security was needed at the site.
“We’re so disturbed by everything that happened,” Cohen said. “We did exactly what we were told to do.”
Cohen said she is hopeful that greater awareness of the challenges at the property will encourage local residents to keep a closer eye on it and report any suspicious activity to police right away.
– with files from Sarah Massah