Vlogger/luxury bags reseller Anna Magkawas was crestfallen when told one of the Hermès Birkin bags she sells at her store has been stolen.
The bag, a Hermès Birkin 35 in color Chocolat priced at PHP390,000, has a square M date stamp, which means it was produced in 2009.
It was stolen last July 20, at around 2 p.m., from the Luxonlineph store on the third floor of Market Market in Taguig City.
Anna, owner of the store, has been in the business of selling designer bags since 2016.
Among her celebrity clients are Aubrey Miles, Sheena Halili, Mariel Padilla, and Sofia Andres.
Anna narrated the incident to PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) through Instagram's direct message on Wednesday, July 22.
She recounted, "Initially, I was shocked and I really felt bad for my staff, Lovely, because when she called me to narrate the story, she sounded distraught.
"She was really traumatized about what happened."
Anna also expressed her dismay in a vlog she posted on the same day the bag was stolen.
She said "Grabe lang kasi nasa pandemic na tayo, 'tapos nakukuha niyo pang magnakaw, manlinlang."
HOW THE BAG WAS STOLEN
According to Anna, Lovely was alone at the store when three customers, a woman and two men, entered and started looking around.
One of the men, the gay one, distracted Lovely while the other got busy stealing the Birkin bag. The woman acted as a lookout.
Anna narrated, "Yung nasa dulong bag [sa shelf sa kabilang side ng store] yung pinupuntirya niya dahil yung [Hermes] bag, nandun [sa top shelf sa kabila].
"Pinipilit niya si Lovely na i-model [yung bag] na nakaharap pa-ganun, para nakatalikod si Lovely, hindi niya nakikita kung anong nasa likod niya."
The guy who took the Birkin bag had already left when Anne's two other employees returned to the store after doing some errands.
Meanwhile, the gay guy and the woman pretended to be getting some cash to buy the bags that Lovely modeled for them.
Anna said she herself saw it all happen through the CCTV cameras.
She told PEP.ph, "Just to clarify cause common comments ng mga nkapanood ng vlog ko is that wala daw kaming CCTV inside the store.
"Of course we have. We have 3 CCTV cameras inside at makikita mo kaagad yun pagpasok pa lang ng pinto ng store...
"I think masyado lang talagang malalakas ang loob nila dahil naka-face mask sila.
"Sinamantala nila ang pagkakataon na naka-face mask ang lahat ng tao para gumawa ng masama dahil alam nilang hindi sila basta basta makilala."
RED FLAGS WHEN BUYING A PRE-LOVED ITEM
Anna further revealed in her vlog that someone also contacted her through Instagram inquiring about the price of the Birkin bag.
It happened before she found out that the bag has been stolen.
The 34-year-old mommy entrepreneur immediately alerted her Instagram followers in case someone tries to sell the stolen Birkin to them.
How will they know if a supposed "pre-loved item" being sold to them has been actually stolen?
Anna said, "It is quite difficult to tell you frankly. Kasi mahirap din mag-judge ng tao. Like ako, hindi ako mapanghusga na tao.
"Hindi kita pag-iisipan kita ng masama na baka nakaw yung binebenta mo.
"A lot of clients come to me to sell their items too. Pero siguro kapag yung presyo, e, sobrang mura din.
"At wala naman maipakitang enough proof yung seller na sa kanya talaga ang item like old photos using the bag, receipt, and no inclusions.
"Red flags sa akin yang ganyan. If a deal is too good to be true, it must not be true."
In the meantime, Anna has implemented new guidelines for her store.
She detailed, "There will be changes in the store. Sa set-up, sa traffic inside, we will be implementing stricter rules to ensure the safety of our clients and staff."
At the moment, the theft incident is still under investigation.