March 10, 2010

Berlin poker robbery an inside job?

Berlin police confirmed Tuesday they were looking for a 5th suspect in a daytime robbery that occurred at the Grand Hyatt Hotel during filming of the European Poker Tour. Police believe the accomplice knew exactly when money had been briefly unsecured and tipped off four other members of the gang.

Police told the German website, The Local:

Because the well-timed heist bore the signs of an amateur job, police told Berlin daily Berliner Zeitung that they now believe there was at least one other accomplice already inside the hotel who gave a signal to begin the raid. "The suspects struck at the exact moment when the money was being prepared for transport at the main safe," a police spokesperson told the paper. "A few minutes before or after and they would have had no chance."

Police called the robbers "amateurs" after reviewing tape of the incident.

Police union chief Rainer Wendt told NTV television: "As for the perpetrators, one has to say: this was clearly not the work of professionals.

"The way they were armed and behaved, as well as the mountain of evidence they left behind already indicates that the police will quickly identify them," he added.

He said the gang had plumbed "new depths of stupidity to carry out such a raid in front of running surveillance cameras".

Nonetheless, the thieves ran off with over 200,000 euros.

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