LONDON (Reuters) – Visitors to London always have to be on the look out
for pickpockets, but now there's another, more positive phenomenon on
the loose -- putpockets.
Aware that people are suffering in the economic crisis, 20 former
pickpockets have turned over a new leaf and are now trawling London's
tourist sites slipping money back into unsuspecting pockets.
Anything from 5 pounds ($8) to 20 pound notes is being surreptitiously
deposited in unguarded pockets or open handbags in Trafalgar Square,
Covent Garden and other busy spots.
The initiative, which runs until the end of August in London before
being rolled out countrywide, is being funded by a broadbrand provider,
which says it wants to brighten up people's lives in unusual ways.
"It feels good to give something back for a change -- and Britons
certainly need it in the current economic climate," said Chris Fitch, a
former pickpocket who now heads TalkTalk's putpocketing initiative.
"Every time I put money back in someone's pocket, I feel less guilty
about the fact I spent many years taking it out."
London's police have been briefed about the plan, which will see at
least 100,000 pounds given away.
(Reporting by Luke Baker; Editing by Kate Kelland)
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