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I’ve bought something that’s been stolen

The Consumer Rights Act 2015 states that a when you buy something from a trader that it must be the traders to sell (this is called holding title to the goods) or they must have permission to sell the goods on the behalf of the owner.

If you’ve purchased goods and you believe they weren’t the traders to sell or they had the owner’s permission to do so, and you know who the rightful owner is then you should try to return the goods to them otherwise you should hand them in to the Police.

If you’ve purchase goods and believe them to be stolen, then you should stop using them and hand them in to the police and obtain a crime reference number.  if you fail to do this then you could be arrested for handling stolen goods.

Once you have done this you should contact the trader providing a crime reference number or other evidence to show that they are no longer in your possession and ask for full refund. 

What should I do next?

If you haven’t already done so then you should try to speak with the trader about your problem to see if you can to come to an agreement. You can then follow this up with a more formal letter of complaint. It’s best to send this by signed for mail which will allow you to check that it’s been received, alternatively you could send an email with a read receipt. You should also give the trader a reasonable timescale to reply.

Last updated: 29 March 2019

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