Latest Trends In Rolex Watch Thefts

Now and then NWC mag likes to read the latest court cases relating to Rolex watch thefts. Not only is Rolex the best selling brand (over 3K) in the UK by a long way, but it is the most targeted by thieves. Why? Simple really, they can offload stolen Rolex watches quicker than any other make. Even without paperwork.

Here are some recent cases;

A woman approached a pensioner guy in Poole, a wealthy town in Dorset. She chatted for a bit, probably clocked the watch was a Sub with a green bezel and grabbed his arm. She escaped in a grey car, probably driven by her crime partner. It’s possible they saw the watch in a  shop, or have seen the guy locally before.

Verdict; be careful not to wear your Rolex while out for a casual walk, especially in summer when you might have a short sleeve shirt on.  Save it for special occasions.


Another female thief, this time in East Grinstead. Again a fairly affluent area, so always be wary of people watching you, or asking about your watch in such areas. Notice the thief chose Waitrose, targeting wealthier customers.

She approached the woman as she was distracted by packing shopping. Young woman, plder victim, so helpless as regards defending herself. She chatted, went for the charity hug, and stole her Rolex. Note the thief using the charity worker disguise with clipboard and hooded anorak, which helps them hide their faces on CCTV.

Verdict; never speak to or engage with so-called charity workers in public. Don’t wear your Rolex to go supermarket shopping, there are too many chancers walking the aisles looking for older, vulnerable people.


Probably the most scary type of thief is the semi-pro Rolex or luxury watch gang. They are usually violent drug dealers, and like to scope out people’s houses, drive around wealthy areas and love to follow older victims home.

This Manchester gang broke into a house in Hale, which is the wealthiest part of Greater Manchester. Yep, richer than Wilmslow. They separated the wife from her husband, hit the man, located a rare Rolex and left rapidly. They ambushed another guy as he arrived home by car from the supermarket. Stole a valuable Rolex.

In both cases, the victims believed they were targeted and followed, possibly for some time. That is highly likely.

What’s also likely is that inside info has been passed onto the gang by someone working in a Manchester watch dealership, which is very difficult to prove, but the most likely explanation of how the gang were able to plan a breakfast time raid on someone. Not only did they know the address, who lived at the address etc. but they knew the Rolex was upstairs – how do you acquire information like that? Not at Waitrose most likely.

Verdict: Think carefully about who you are buying a watch from and how much data you trade to make the purchase. You can’t avoid giving your address, but avoid younger staff members, or flash git shop workers who seem to live a luxury lifestyle on car wash wages. They might well trade your data for a cash bribe, it doesn’t happen often, but it happens.

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