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Hello chaps,


I am afraid I got myself in a situation. I will skip the emotional stuff and try to be factual.


I managed to develop an online shopping addiction, which resulted in high volume of returns to the stores hence security started watching me. I was detained on exiting a TKMaxx store on allegations of a theft (worth 35 quid) and fraud for replacing price tags on 2 items. Never had incidents or a CR before. I was given a 12-months store ban and the police was called to take details but still waiting for a voluntary interview date.


I was told that the theft was not too bad, but the fraud bit is more serious. I am still deliberating between admitting and denying but a solicitor said it all depends on evidence, which will only be known at the police station.


However, there is an additional problem with returning the existing purchases. I still have a number of items (receipts in date) to be returned as well as a few internet orders still unopened. I usually return the orders to a store, which is free. Returning by post will cost me quite a lot but I am not prohibited from doing so.


However, I am trying to work out how on earth do I get refund for items bought in stores if I am not allowed to enter the stores? My OH is refusing to get involved fearing to be seen as a co-offender and I am too embarrassed to ask friends. Any idea what can I do??? We are talking a substantial sum here, not pennies, so letting it go is not an option for me.


If I change my appearance and go into a different store, will my credit card get flagged up during transactions and I will be detained, or will the till get a call from security asking to put aside all returned merchandise for later inspection? In any case, there will be a breach of a ban, and that in itself is another offence? What on earth do I do???

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Contact their head office. Note the situation.

Ensure that you are only asking about items you can show you are entitled to a refund on. Work out if your entitlement to a refund is a statutory one (such as distance purchase, or faulty goods), or discretionary (such as “I’ve changed my mind” for an item bought in store).

If they say “your entitlement to a refund was based on our policy rather than a statutory entitlement, and our policy changes once you are suspected of fraud and are banned” : thems the rubs!


If you are entitled to a statutory refund or you are hoping they’ll allow you a refund on items you can show you bought: they may allow you back into a store on one occasion to do so (but expect heavy scrutiny!), or see if you can do a postal return


Breach of the ban would be a civil, not a criminal matter

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Hi and welcome to CAG. I would tend to agree with BazzaS here. You have gotten yourself into a situation where extracting yourself is going to be tough.



You can write to the head office to see if they will help but don't expect a reasonable answer from them.



What I would do now is to go see your GP. Addictions are a sign of something going on in your life and getting to the bottom of that is paramount. I feel that if you explain to TKMaxx that you have had issues and are dealing with this, they may be more sympathetic to you.



As for the police. No point guessing what they will do. If you do get invited in for interview, make sure your solicitor is there even if the police just invite you in for a 'chat' I suspect that the police will take no further action if you explain yourself properly although I must say that you are under no obligation to say anything at all. At most you could get an official warning or a fixed penalty notice. A case of wait and see.

If you are asked to deal with any matter via private message, PLEASE report it.

Everything I say is opinion only. If you are unsure on any comment made, you should see a qualified solicitor

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A friend who won’t think “hey, if these returns are fraudulent too, then I’ll be in the frame for fraud by false representation, too.

At least I’ll have some company in the police station and in court, too!”.

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It is great to have good friends whom you can rely on! Perhaps, if I had, I would not have got myself into this mess... As for acquaintances... all from respectable background, would not even dream of asking them. If I do, I would be left without any friends AND acquaintances.

Looks like I have to chance it - perhaps, in a further away small store without security staff. Would anybody here risk it?

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I’m sure someone here is daft enough.

Mind you, the very fact that you will be going to a small store far away, in an effort to avoid scrutiny, says it all.


Didn’t you like the advice to seek a postal return of items you are SURE qualify for a refund?

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Not to avoid scrutiny but to avoid being recognised as banned from stores, i.e. being able to go into a store... As for internet orders, they are being returned by post.


Asking for a postal refund for the items bought in stores is quite optimistic IMHO. They don't do it even under normal circumstances...

Edited by TKholic
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Right : you are banned but want to evade the ban, but that isn’t “trying to avoid scrutiny”

The ban is a form of scrutiny : they can scrutinise you to see if you are permitted to enter or not.

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Just desperately trying to get my money back, after all I am entitled to a refund within 28 days. If they catch me, I will just explain this. No need for patronising.

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Well, it seems you don’t want advice but merely validation / someone agreeing it is OK to do so.

I’m not here to validate your stupidity.

Do as you wish, but don’t be surprised if it goes wrong and you:

a) don’t get a refund

b) exacerbate your current woes.


I’m not as confident that you’ll get a warning or FPN, especially if you make things worse for yourself.

I doubt this would reach Crown Court, but if it did it moves from the 12 months maximum sentence in Magistrates Court to a maximum of 10 years. For that reason : don’t rock the boat by risking it.

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nice too see people giving sensible advice here.


You are banned. If you flout your ban, and enter a store, for whatever reason, you are a trespasser.


It shows a pattern of dishonesty. You know you are banned, yet you thought your reason was better than listening to the law.


If you use your card in a store, yes it will flag it. Does that mean loss prevention will tell the police ……. depends on how much of a prat you were to them when you were stopped. Used to be routine in my area to let the police know if they were under investigation, that they were flouting their ban.



facial recognition was rolled out over 2 years ago now to stores.



Speak to customer services, post them back, and be done with it.



Oh, and decide carefully if you want to deny allegations. Don't forget every tk holding room has audio and video, so anything you said will of been recorded. Read some of my other threads, but we have to have at least 2 fraudulent returns, there will be footage of the purchase, and the return, being different.

How exactly do you account for the price ticket having been removed from one item, and it magically adhering itself to the wrong item

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