Cuts blamed: Police loot army surplus stores

Riots Latest: There has been much debate about the cause of the disturbances; from the killing of Mark Duggan, to Blackberry phones, to youths with their hoodies on back to front mistaking the front window of Curry’s for the door to the youth centre.

However, the extent to which the government’s cuts to public services is to blame for the violence became clear last night after riot police themselves were seen smashing the front windows of army surplus shops and running off with equipment.

It was disgraceful,” says eyewitness Nappy, 18, from Croydon, South London.

There we were, just climbing out of PC World with a load of laptops, when we saw riot police kicking down the door of the Army and Navy Store warehouse across the road.”

They all piled in, and seconds later came out with their arms full of boots, helmets, sleeping bags, compasses and whatnot. It’s disgusting.”

As disaffected youth, we have have been targeting chain shops which pay criminally low wages, which have destroyed the traditional high street and which are, in any case, insured up to the eyeballs.”

To see policemen target independent retailers like this is, frankly, sickening, and only serves to increase my disillusionment with consumerism.”

David Cameron, who came back from holiday today, has condemned the violence.

Not only are two-thirds of my cabinet millionaires but I went to Eton, so I think I can safely speak for the ordinary man in the street when I say how revolted I am to see images of people looting from Lidl. The stuff in there is simply awful.”

As for the suggestion that the police themselves were involved in looting last night – total poppycock.”

I was in Croydon myself this morning, and I can assure everyone that down there it is absolutely normal to see policemen with World War Two gas masks on their heads, playing around in the street with crossbows and waterproof matches.”