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Thief Swipes $25K Crocodile Bag from Ralph Lauren Store, Cops Say

By DNAinfo Staff on March 21, 2012 1:02pm  | Updated on March 21, 2012 8:21pm

The alleged suspect walked off with a crocodile bag worth $25,000 on Feb. 12, 2012.
The alleged suspect walked off with a crocodile bag worth $25,000 on Feb. 12, 2012.
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By Trevor Kapp and Julie Shapiro

DNAinfo Staff

UPPER EAST SIDE — She's a well-dressed thief with a taste for luxury handbags.

Donning a a tan three-quarter coat, a maroon scarf and black pants and boots, a brazen bandit sashayed out of an Upper East Side Ralph Lauren store last month with a $25,000 crocodile handbag in tow, police said.

The reptilian rip-off unfolded at the designer's shop at 888 Madison Ave., near 72nd Street on Feb. 12 at 3:35 p.m., according to cops.

Sources said that the suspect, described as 40-50 years old and 110 to 115 pounds with a thin build, calmly walked out of the high-end store without paying.

Ralph Lauren did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The stolen purse appears to be one of Ralph Lauren's signature Ricky bags (right), said Tania Anthony, who runs Resale Riches, an online consignment boutique. Celebrities including Lindsay Lohan and Jessica Alba have been spotted with a version of the bag on their arm, Anthony said.

Ralph Lauren's Crocodile Ricky bag.
Ralph Lauren's Crocodile Ricky bag.
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Ralph Lauren

"It's not as desirable as a Birkin bag, but crocodile is very expensive no matter how you cut it, so it's still very desriable," Anthony said. "This bag will always have a following and a high resale value."

A similar Ralph Lauren bag is being sold on eBay for $16,999, and on the designer's website it retails for $16,995 to $18,500, depending color.

The pricey purse is "crafted from exquisite hand-selected African crocodile and finished with custom Italian hardware," according to Ralph Lauren's website.

Nadia, 40, a tourist from San Antonio who was shopping in Midtown Wednesday afternoon with a brown Louis Vuitton bag on her arm, scoffed at the alleged shoplifter's choice.

"That's not the one I'd steal," said Nadia, who did not give her last name. "It's just not worth it. It's not that stylish. I like my bag." 

Anyone with information is being urged to contact Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS, log onto www.nypdcrimestoppers.org, or text 274637, and then entering TIP577.