MASKED thieves have broken into a shop in Cam and stolen a large amount of cigarettes and alcohol in a midnight raid.

The One Stop shop on Phillimore Road was broken into by a gang of four men wearing balaclavas and dark clothing after they cut the bolt holding the shop’s shutter at around 1.30am on Tuesday.

CCTV footage showed that once the burglars were inside they set about taking nearly all the shops cigarettes and tobacco as well as several bottles of spirits before placing them in a black dustbin bag and making off with their stash.

When the crime was discovered, police officers set about investigating the crime scene for forensics, delaying the opening of the shop.

One regular shopper and Cam resident was Paul Owl, who said that there should be little sympathy for the thieves if they are found.

“I think they should lock them all up,” he said.

“The effect it has on this community is unbelievable. The lads couldn’t come in this morning for their papers. I really hate it.”

A Gloucestershire Police spokesman said: “Once inside they have taken a large amount of alcohol and cigarettes, placing them in a black dustbin and left the building in the same way they entered.”

One Stop spokeswoman Annie Good said: “We were concerned to hear of this and are relieved that nobody was hurt.

“This is now a matter for the police and we are supporting them with their investigation.”

Anyone with any information on the incident is asked to call Gloucestershire Police on 101 quoting incident number 16 of 22/04/14.