An innovative new approaching to tackling shoplifting in Fenland has been launched.
Cambridgeshire police have joined forces with Fenland District Council and nine Wisbech stores to create shelf-edge messages to send a direct message to would-be thieves.
It is believed it is the first time the tactic has been used in the county.
The signs warn potential shoplifters they are being watched and that more than 1,500 arrests were made during 2011/12 in connection with the crime.
The messages are in English, Lithuanian and Polish, after analysis showed offenders were most likely to speak those languages.
They will be placed on shelf edges next to items usually targeted by thieves, namely: alcohol, meat, cheese and health and beauty.
Insp Robin Sissons, of Cambridgeshire police, said: “Shoplifting remains a priority for us and we are committed to coming up with new and innovative ways to tackle this type of crime.
“Using the shelf-edge messages allows us to send a direct message to offenders to make them think twice before they steal from shops.
“The message is simple: we will not tolerate shoplifting. If you steal from a shop you will be arrested and put before the courts.”
Leaflets will also be handed out in places of worship, recruitment agencies and estate agents reinforcing the message.
In addition, banners will be put up at the entrances to key stores where the majority of offences have occurred.