SECURITY officials at a Bournemouth department store tracked a hapless burglar with CCTV as he searched for a way out in the moments before police arrived to arrest him.

Akuma Bitwoded Ngwenyama swept more than £12,000-worth of top-end cosmetics from the shelves after getting into Beales within hours of the shop closing on October 31.

But the store’s top security officer lives minutes away – and he raced to the store to stop the burglary taking place.

Police arrived minutes later and Ngwenyama was arrested in a service lift.

Tony Brown, chief executive and owner of Beales, said the break-in was one of two raids on his stores on the same night. In the second, which didn’t happen in Dorset, cosmetics were stolen by two men.

The pair targeted Chanel-branded items exclusively.

“In six weeks, we’ve had seven break in attempts across different stores,” he said. “Police have responded incredibly quickly. There seems to be a real difference there between reporting a burglary and shoplifting.

“When it comes to thefts, the response just isn’t there at all in most cases. However, for us, all theft dents our profits and affects our staff and our stockists.”

Ngwenyama, 43 and of no fixed abode, admitted burglary during a hearing at Poole Magistrates’ Court last week.

He was sentenced to 20 weeks in prison for the offence.

Mr Brown said: “My operations manager was first on the scene and could then track the burglar using our CCTV.

“He was running around trying to find a way out but we’ve got an excellent security system and we were able to track him through the store.”

A spokesperson from Dorset Police said officers were called to the Old Christchurch Road store at 10.25pm on Halloween night. The offender was arrested at the scene and the goods were recovered.

Detective Constable Christian Bryant, of Dorset Police’s Priority Crime Team, said: “Thanks to the swift response of officers we were able to arrest Ngwenyama at the scene of this break-in and recover all of the property he was attempting to steal.

“We are committed to working with members of our business community to help protect their property and ensuring anyone who commits offences such as this is identified and brought before the courts.”