Ikea steps up security after arrest of five teens
Ikea will step up its security after five teenagers, aged between 16 and 18, were found in the rugs department of the Swedish furniture chain's Tampines outlet in the early hours of Sunday.
They were arrested for wilfully trespassing.
Preliminary investigations found the teens entered the building before its closing time of 11pm, and hid themselves to avoid detection.
An Ikea spokesman told The New Paper that members of the public notified the police after spotting their exploits on the social media account of one of the teenagers.
The spokesman added that the police were alerted by the viewers at 12.50am, and officers from Bedok Police Division arrived at the store at 1.20am .
Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao reported that the police and Ikea's security team searched the store, finding the boys in about half an hour, hidden among rugs.
According to the Ikea spokesman, no property was damaged and the boys did not make any attempt to steal from the store.
Ikea added that it would step up security to stop copycats.
Said the spokesman: "Ikea is a fun destination for many people and we love to give fans a great day out but an unsanctioned sleepover is simply not safe, given the warehouse operations and heavy equipment in our building. The safety of people in our store is our top priority."
The Ikea spokesman said they intend to write to the police investigative branch to ask for leniency.
The stunt appears to be linked to what is known as the Ikea Challenge. The online challenge was started by two Belgian teenagers in July 2016.
The goal of the challenge is to hide in an Ikea store before closing time, and stay there until the next day.
Get The New Paper on your phone with the free TNP app. Download from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store now