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Groups of thieves, some carrying a hammer and a crowbar, are targeting luxury stores in cities across America ahead of the holiday shopping season, using “flash mobs” tactics to steal thousands of dollars’ worth of merchandise.

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A group of at least 40 people were reportedly involved in a mass robbery-and-catch-up theft Friday at the locations of Louis Vuitton, Burberry and Bloomingdale’s in San Francisco, the Associated Press said. reports,

San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudina announced She charged nine people with felonies on Tuesday that stemmed from a burglary at a Louis Vuitton store, a cannabis retailer and a Walgreens in the city.

At a Nordstrom in the nearby East Bay town of Walnut Creek, about 80 people jumped out of vehicles on Saturday and stormed the store flash-mob style. Los Angeles Times reports,

In Los Angeles, a group allegedly broke into Louis Vuitton and Saks Fifth Avenue on Sunday morning using a sledgehammer, but police said they were able to chase the group before they got inside the store.

A group of about 20 people burglarized a Nordstrom store at The Grove Shopping Center in LA’s Fairfax district on Monday night, with key officers following a high-speed across two freeways, ABC7. reports,

Last week more than a dozen thieves stole More than $100,000 worth of merchandise from a Louis Vuitton store in Oak Brook, a Chicago suburb, according to CNN.

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