Dozens were filmed as they disappeared into the night with their arms laden with plasma TVs, laptops and sports clothes.
Claims that rampant lawlessness was motivated by the death of Mark Duggan at the hands of police was quickly exposed as a lie.
Some of those involved in attacks on stores in Enfield, Tottenham and Oxford Circus were barely old enough to be arrested.
Hackney: Smash and grab - A man jump kicks a store front window to get in and loot
Hackney: Looters queue to get in to a convenience store to get hold of its goods
Hackney: Hooded thieves take what they can from inside the store