Green’s Dictionary of Slang

tealeaf v.

[tea leaf n.]

1. (orig. UK Und.) to work as a thief; thus tea-leafing n.

[UK]Illus. Police News 30 June 2/5: ‘We can do a bit of tea-leaving’ (which he understood to be a slang term for stealing).
[UK]C. Rook Hooligan Nights 14: He could do more than his share at tea-leafing.
[UK]F. Norman Guntz 21: I didn’t like the sound of this little bit of tealeafing.
[NZ]G. Newbold Big Huey 180: Tealeafing is just about the worst thing you can do in a jail [...] A tealeaf is just a cunt in my eyes.
[UK]J. Cameron Vinnie Got Blown Away 163: ‘I never minded a bit of tea-leafing,’ she goes, ‘you got to expect it off kids.’.
[Aus]Pete’s Aussie Sl. Home Page [Internet] tea leafing: thieving.

2. to rob.

[UK]J.J. Connolly Layer Cake 116: We never tea-leafed the cunts.