The owner of a shop raided by thieves last week says he is considering closing down after he lost more than £8,000 worth of stock.

RP Sweet News, in Market Square, Waltham Abbey, was burgled in the late hours of Good Friday

Hundreds of boxes of cigarettes worth £6,000 were taken, along with CCTV cameras, after a 'search of the shop' according to police.

Owner, Mohammed Perwaiz, said: “I’m still feeling very stressed.

"I think I will have to give up my shop because I can’t pay the bills, I am really struggling.

"My family are good to me though and they are trying to help me out, but it’s not really enough.

“I lost £8,500 worth of stock; there is not a single packet of cigarettes left. To lose that in one day is very difficult, it was a huge shock.”

Mr Perwaiz says he is disappointed with the help he has received from the police.

“I haven’t heard anything from the Police, they have hardly done anything.

"They just sent a letter explaining that unfortunately crime rates are very high and they will try to catch the perpetrators, but it doesn’t really help much.

“There is no police station in Waltham Abbey so there is nobody to talk to.

"Crime has definitely got worse since it shut down. The police have even admitted it themselves.”

According to police statistics, the number of burglaries and thefts, including shoplifting, in Waltham Abbey rose by 33% in the first two months of this year. 

In the meantime, Mr Perwaiz is trying to rebuild his business and is awaiting a visit from his insurers.

He said: “I am still shocked, but I am trying to stay open, I am doing my best.”

The Guardian has been unable to contact Essex Police