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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Lynn Love & Chiara Fiorillo

Thieves steal 8ft gorilla from garden centre leaving owner raging at 'planned robbery'

Thieves have stolen an 8ft gorilla from a garden centre, leaving owners raging by the statue's sudden disappearance.

Gary, a statue made of glass fibre, was stolen from Reynard Nursey in Carluke, South Lanarkshire, Scotland, at around midnight on March 20.

Owner Andrew Scott, 56, said thieves could be seen pulling up in a white van on CCTV before unbolting Gary from the ground and then putting him inside the vehicle, the Daily Record reports.

He said CCTV pictures are "grainy" but show several people stealing the gorilla, in what he thinks was a planned robbery.

Mr Scott said: "The CCTV pictures are very grainy but a white van pulls up and several people get out. Gary was bolted down to decking so it looks like they unbolted him and carefully placed him in the van. I would say it was planned.

"When we looked back on the CCTV, an unknown car pulled up at around 10.30pm. It wasn't a car we recognised so I'd say it was connected."

Andrew said staff were shocked when they arrived at work this morning to see Gary had disappeared from his usual place at the entrance of the garden centre, having previously been situated inside.

He said: "I actually arrived and didn't notice he was gone. It wasn't until my son pointed out to me that he wasn't there that I realised someone must have taken him. We couldn't believe it."

The gorilla statue has become part of the family-run business and during the pandemic, he even wore his PPE, at Christmas he donned a Santa hat and was covered in big red dots recently in reference to monkeypox outbreaks.

Andrew, who paid £3,000 for Gary 10 years ago, added: "We have no idea why anyone would have taken him. He's sat at the entrance to our nursery for the last eight years and has never been bothered. I don't understand it to be honest.

"He's just a bit of fun and has been used as a gimmick for our business for the last 10 years."

"I mean what are they going to do with him? He's huge and old and not very discreet."

A spokesperson for Police Scotland said: "Around 8.35am on Monday, 20 March, we received a report of the theft of an 8ft fiberglass gorilla from outside a premises on Mauldslie Road, Carluke.

"Enquiries are ongoing to trace those responsible. Anyone with information should call Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident number 0588 of Monday, 20 March, 2023."

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