From the shit-covered streets of San Francisco to the crime-ridden boroughs of New York City and the migrant-packed neighborhoods of London and Paris, timepiece aficionados are hiding their expensive wristwatches.
Why? A tidal wave of Rolex theft is sweeping across the Western world. Those once flaunting their Rolex, Patek, and Audemars Piguet – the wrist trophies of ‘success’ – are leaving them at home. New data from Bloomberg, citing The Watch Register, revealed a staggering $1.3 billion in luxury watch thefts last year.
The Watch Register said on its website its “database currently lists over 80,000 lost and stolen watches, and is growing rapidly.” The database contains 850 different brands and watchmakers, including Rolex, Omega, Cartier, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, Richard Mille, Breitling, TAG, Heuer, IWC, Jaeger LeCoultre, and others.
The company told Bloomberg that 6,815 watches were added to the list last year, a staggering 60% increase compared to the previous 12-month period.
Last year, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department warned about an epidemic of rolex thefts. Watch as thieves rob a person for their watch in broad daylight on a city street.