Retailer Delivers Harsh Ultimatum to Alleged Rare Toy Thief

In the United States, the standard protocol when an employee catches a shoplifter in the act is to just let the crook go. It is, after all, better for the company to eat the loss for the item than to get involved in messy legal battles when the plucky high school-age cashier pursues the criminal and inevitably gets his ass kicked.

One Japanese retro toy retailer, though – faced with the loss of an exceedingly rare Tetsujin wind-up toy that was recently stolen – decided to strike back at the alleged thief with a sinister ultimatum.

Since the store – one of a chain called Mandarake – had captured the perfect money shot of the thief’s face on their security cameras, they took to their official site to post an edited capture from the security footage and a terse message:


“Return the toy within a week, or we will publicly release this image without a mosaic.”

We presume store management ran out of space to add, “MWAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!!” to the threat.


While the threat sounds like it came from some comically evil shadow organization, it’s possible Mandarake is being pretty civil here; They could have easily shown the security footage to authorities or uploaded the guy’s photo immediately without the mosaic.

At least this way the criminal collector has a chance to display the toy on the mantle at his mom’s house, where he clearly still lives, for a week before she makes him take it back and apologize. Mandarake says the mosaic will be removed on August 12 otherwise.

Original message here.

4 thoughts on “Retailer Delivers Harsh Ultimatum to Alleged Rare Toy Thief

  1. Interesting, I never heard that was protocol in the US! I suppose it would depend on the shop and a vintage toy shop would probably want to protect its stock anywhere. There was a shop in San Francisco that not only caught and prosecuted, they took Polaroids of the thieves at arrest and had a poster that said “We prosecute!” Or something like that. That poster always made me a little uncomfortable…

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