Police are looking for two women and a child after CCTV footage showed the boy stealing a phone from a barbershop in Stanger, KwaZulu-Natal, earlier in June.
"Two ladies walked in with the boy. He looked about 11 years old or so. The one woman came in to thread her eyebrows, while the other waited nearby with the boy," Sohil Allarakhu Shaikh, the owner of Shahid's barber, told News24.
While the barber was attending to one of the women, the other woman started loitering around - this in turn blocked the barber from seeing the boy's whereabouts.
Once the boy was out of sight, he was able to quickly open one of the drawers and swipe a Samsung Galaxy phone.
"That phone is worth R10 000. There was R100 cash taken from that drawer too that belonged to the barber," Shaikh said.
He added that once the trio were done, they paid for the threading and left without anyone noticing anything.
When one of Shaikh's employees could not find the phone, they checked the CCTV footage and saw what happened.
Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said a case of theft had been opened at KwaDukuza police station and the matter was under investigation.