Famous Sydney cat, Abercrombie Charlie, has been returned to his owner after being kidnapped

Abercrombie Charlie, Sydney’s most famous cat, has reportedly been recovered after having been abducted over the weekend. Details regarding how and where he was found are not yet known, but there is some information about how and where he was abducted.

Charlie is from Redfern, where he is a popular and beloved member of the local community. His owner, Lou Shackleton, said he’s a fixture around town:

“He’s just known. He’s got visitors that come and visit him every day. He’s got visitors that when they’re in Sydney, they make a point to come and see him. He is just loved.” 

Charlie is also on Instagram where he has gathered a considerable number of followers. Huffington Post reports that his image was deployed in support of the Yes Vote campaign in 2017, which advocated for gay marriage. Here’s how one local described Charlie’s neighborhood presence:

“I used to walk the same route to my old job, and it would be the highlight of my morning to walk past him. Sometimes he’d be smack bang in the middle of the pavement lazing in the sun, and you’d just have to walk around him, other times he’d be on top of a car bonnet, and then on some picturesque flower beds.” 

Anyway, Charlie was kidnapped on Saturday night by a man and a woman using a ridesharing service.

“About eight o’clock Saturday evening I got a message from one of Charlie’s followers saying ‘Hey, we’ve just seen Charlie being snatched by two people, they’ve jumped in a car and driven off,’ Shackleton said. “They’ve got the number plate, that’s been reported to the police. It was a guy and a girl, he had a black hoodie, she had a red top on.” She continued:

“I’ve spoken to Redfern Police Station, but the driver doesn’t live in the area so now we’re waiting for another station to go and visit the driver. As of last night and this morning, that still hasn’t been done. And no update on the progress. The police are being a bit slow, but I get that—it’s just a cat.”

As mentioned above, Charlie has reportedly been recovered. That will be a relief for Shackleton, who must now decide whether to press charges.

When all that is resolved, Shackleton should consider putting Charlie on a diet. It’s plain to see in his Instagram photos that he’s overweight—indeed, he’s eight kilos. Losing one or two will make for a healthier, happier cat.

Pet theft is probably more common than most people think. My neighbor’s cat was once abducted by the local postman, who returned him a couple days later plagued by guilt and thoroughly ashamed of himself.