ALMOST £2,000 has been stolen from a Vale antiques shop in a daring overnight raid.

Alan Arthur, the owner of Ben View Antiques in Alexandria, was alerted to the break in yesterday, when a security guard from Lomond Galleries alerted him to a window having been smashed.

According to Alan, the alleged culprit smashed a window to the centre, before doing the same to his shop.

After checking CCTV, Alan caught the brazen thief red-handed.

The alleged crook can be seen attempting to gain entry to a cabinet, which houses silver bullion bars, coins and notes.

Trying to pry it open by hand, the thief pulls the sleeves of his hooded top down over his hands, potentially so he won't leave fingerprints.

READ MORE: Appeal for information after women attempt to enter pensioners' home

He eventually puts his hood over his head, in a bid to hide his face from the camera.

Alan described the theft as "amateur-ish", saying: "He didn't come in tooled up, he even had to use an ornamental cannon to smash his way into the cabinet, it's not exactly a planned heist."

At several points during the raid, he walks out of view of the CCTV, towards the broken window.

Alan told the Reporter he believes the thief had help.

He said: "This was definitely planned out. He keeps going back outside like he's confused about what he's supposed to be getting.

"I think he had someone outside who was telling him where to go and what to get."

Alan was perplexed by the choice of target from the thieves, saying: "The silver bars are really hard to shift.

"They're quite distinctive, and it will be difficult for anyone to sell them on. The notes will be fairly easy to get rid of though.

"It's really clear that this has been planned, because they've come in and went straight for that cabinet, instead of just taking everything they can, they've decided they're going to get the bars from that cabinet."

Alan had already given a statement to police, and has since been visited by the crime scene team.

READ MORE: Contractor set to be appointed for Balloch Bridge work

For the whole video, the alleged culprit's face is visible.

Alan said: "They're clearly not the brightest tools in the box, because you can see their face the whole way through the video."

For all the latest from Dumbarton and the Vale, click here.

On top of the £2,000 in merchandise, Alan estimates that the window will cost a further £600, which will not be covered by insurance.

He said: "Insurance companies don't cover antique shops like mine, because they can't value the stuff that's inside, so that's money I'm going to have to pay."

Alan also put the video on his own social media channels, in the hopes of catching the culprit.

He said: "I don't want a lot of press, but I really just hope that we can catch this guy.

"If I catch him then he's in a world of trouble."

Alan, who also owns Lomond Sheds, has only been operating the shop since November.

Sargeant Brian Simpson from Dumbarton Police Office told the Reporter inquiries were still ongoing into the matter, and anyone with information should contact 101, quoting the reference number 0793 of August 26.