A shop owner has criticised the law after claiming he caught 300 thieves - but saw only nine convicted.
Steve Lord, owner of Hill Shop and Videos in Stroud, fitted 12 CCTV cameras after losing £30,000 of goods.
Despite giving police pictures of shoplifters, Mr Lord says the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is reluctant to pursue cases.
A CPS spokeswoman said she could not comment on individual cases but added: "Where there is evidence we prosecute."
Mr Lord said: "Unfortunately the CPS deem it, in many cases, to not be in the public interest to prosecute these people."
I rang my local Crime Reduction Offier yesterday (didn't they used to be Crime Prevention? have they given up?) about the new venture and putting CCTV in to the public area to catch any scrotes who want to disprupt my persuit of profit. I got no encouragement or advice on crime prevention, all I got was alecture on the Data Protection act and how I must keep back up copies of films, put notices up etc or I would be breaking the law. And that sort of lawbreaking is much easier to investigate than stopping spotty youths in Burberry hats who have no sense of meum and teum.
And no wonder we have a government which has promoted "The philosophical assimilation of meum and teum,..(which).., must of necessity be followed by their practical confusion, resulting in the sanction of theft, robbery, &c".