Incredibly, we are in the middle of a Lego crime wave. There seems to big money in the colourful, interlocking, plastic bricks, so much so that they have attracted the attentions of an international ring of toy thieves.
Three suspects were caught taking boxes of Lego from a toy shop near Paris with the intention of selling them in Poland, while in Oregon last month a man was arrested on suspicion of stealing Lego to the value of $7,500.
The black market is fuelled by collectors eager to get their hands on special edition sets which are in top-notch condition and, ideally, have not been removed from their packaging. Lego Café Corner, issued in 2007 for $150, is now fetching up to $3,000 if it is in its original condition. An unopened set of the Lego Millennium Falcon is selling for in excess of $3,500. If you have a rare or valuable set, look after it.
With time on our hands during the pandemic, Lego has reported a 100% increase in sales, more grist for the criminals’ wheel perhaps. Their largest commercially available set, a model of the Colosseum, itself a Guinness World Record holder, has spawned another record, with Paul Ofema assembling all 9.036 pieces (in the right order) in just 13 hours, 37 minutes, and 36 seconds. Let’s hope he keeps it safe.