The producers of a reality TV show that aims to catch thieves red handed were left red faced Thursday after their own equipment was stolen.
"Swag" was devised by Guy Ritchie, Madonna's director husband, to trap petty criminals in the act and deliver surprise retribution. But producers missed a trick when thieves crept into the show's London edit suite Wednesday night and carried off camera equipment worth tens of thousands of pounds.
"It would have been better if the `Swag' camera crew had been around and on the case," said series editor Syeda Irtizaali. "The chances of these thieves escaping with anything would have been substantially reduced if our crack team of super-sleuths had been around."
Irtizaali said producers are relieved that the thieves took only the camera equipment and left behind tapes of the second series of the show.
The first series of the show, aired last year, scared away burglars and surprised car thieves with talking vehicles.
The second series, which begins on June 29, features British celebrities trying to get away with petty crimes such as dodging payment of restaurant bills.
Ritchie has said he came up with the idea for the program after his bicycle was stolen from outside a London recording studio.