Real life Fast and Furious: iPhones worth £450k stolen from moving truck – The Guardian


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Boxes of iPhones worth €500,000 were stolen from a moving delivery truck in the Netherlands, police say. Photograph: Anton Novoderezhkin/TASS

iPhone Real life Fast and Furious: iPhones worth £450k stolen from moving truck

Dutch police arrest five men for allegedly using a modified van to break into and steal from a moving smartphone delivery van

Dutch police have arrested five men suspected of stealing €500,000 (£448,000) of iPhones in a dangerous late-night heist from a moving truck akin to action scenes from Fast and Furious.

Dutch police said that the five men, aged from 33 to 43 and all from Romania, allegedly raided a delivery truck full of iPhones on the A73 highway near Horst on the night of 24 July. Using a modified van, they drove close enough to the back of the truck to allow one of the suspects to climb onto it and break in through the doors while it was being driven down the road.

The suspect then passed boxes of Apple’s iPhone from the delivery truck into the modified van through a hole in its roof.

Dutch police spokesman Ed Kraszewski said that officers had long been investigating thefts from trucks but had remained sceptical that such a heist could be pulled off. Not any more.

Kraszewski said: “The truck was taking its freight from A to B and did not stop. Even so, [the phones] were gone. So it must have happened that way. And now we finally have the evidence, with the van and the loot.”

The five men were arrested at a holiday park in the central Netherlands on Saturday. Police recovered the iPhones and the van they believe was used in the heist. The suspects are to appear Tuesday before an investigating judge.

Kraszewski said similar raids had been reported elsewhere in Europe, almost always targeting high-end smartphones, but that there had been no arrests until now. The thieves are accused of being responsible for emptying 17 trucks of expensive goods since 2015, according to local reports.

Romanian police released a video, shot from a police helicopter of a similar raid from 2012, where thieves drove up behind a truck using an angle grinder to break open the doors and steal goods while other members of the gang held-back traffic in other cars.

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A Romanian gang caught operating a similar heist on a moving truck from 2012.

Dutch police will send the fingerprints of the suspects to colleagues around Europe to check for potential matches to previous crimes.

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