• February 9, 2023

People Are Stealing Legos. Here’s Why : NPR

French police arrested suspected Lego thieves. And last month, a man was arrested in Oregon after local police suspected he stole $ 7,500 worth of Lego toy sets. Chris Ratcliffe / Bloomberg via Getty Images Hide caption

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Chris Ratcliffe / Bloomberg via Getty Images

French police arrested suspected Lego thieves. And last month, a man was arrested in Oregon after local police suspected he stole $ 7,500 worth of Lego toy sets.

Chris Ratcliffe / Bloomberg via Getty Images

Lego theft can be on the rise.

According to a recent report by French police have been investigating an international ring of toy thieves with a particular affinity for the brightly colored, interlocking bricks The guard.

In this case, three suspects were caught taking boxes of Legos from a toy store near Paris with the aim of selling them in Poland The Parisian.

And it’s not just Europe. Lego robberies also occurred in the United States. Last month, A man was arrested in Oregon After local police suspected he stole $ 7,500 worth of Lego toy sets.

There’s a lot of money in Legos. Lego sets are available in limited editions and will soon become collectibles.

The big Lego scam

There could even be an entire black market for the bricks, says Lego specialist Gerben van IJken Scott Simon in the Weekend Edition.

“Well, it’s very difficult to prove that there is a black market. However, there are enormous numbers of collectors who are missing out on certain sets and are willing to pay a lot of money for those sets,” he says.

Van IJken is an auctioneer on a collectibles auction website. He says the most valuable and sought-after sets are those in their original packaging that hasn’t been opened yet.

For example – Lego Café Corner, a set that released in 2007 for around $ 150, can go up to $ 3,000 these days if kept in its original condition, says van IJken.

Other sets routinely fetch thousands of dollars in online marketplaces. Some salespeople ask for more than $ 3,500 for an unopened set of the Lego Millennium Falcon.

Like almost everything else in the world, the pandemic could be a driving force behind this phenomenon.

“It is still extremely popular, especially during the lockdown period that we are currently in,” adds van IJken. “And Lego sales are still extremely high, not just at the Lego Company itself, but also on our platform. We saw sales increase by 100% last year.”

Peter Breslow and Kitty Eisele produced and edited the audio version of this story.

Jack

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