An East Vancouver store that sold products by Prada, Coach, North Face, Acteryx, Tommy Hilfiger, Mexx and more — all at steep discounts — was closed this week by police, who said the entire inventory was stolen.
After receiving a tip on the weekend, the Vancouver Police Department found a secret store, complete with clothing racks and a changing room, hidden in a 500-square-foot apartment in a building on the 5300 block of Victoria Drive.
Ten customers were inside at the time, trying on jackets.
Sgt. Randy Fincham said all the furniture had been removed from the apartment to make way for hundreds of items police say were worth, at retail, $250,000, including $70,000 worth of ice wine.
"A lot of this stuff is high-end Coach items, high-end North Face, high-end Arcteryx items — that still have retail tags — in the $500 range. A lot of this property was being sold at a third of what retail prices were," Fincham said.
Const. Brian Hobbs said police found designer wallets, perfume and ice wine, all laid out throughout the whole apartment.
"The entire kitchen had been converted into a display area. All of the cupboards were open, all of the shelves were displaying purses, sunglasses, baby clothing," he said.
Two women from Vancouver, one aged 45 and the other 53, were arrested and later released from custody.
Police believe the store operated through social media and word of mouth, and that another group shoplifted and brought inventory to the store and possibly took special orders.
Fincham said the Vancouver Police Department, which has removed the suspected stolen goods, will be contacting retailers to try and determine the goods' origins.