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A group of thieves reportedly drove up to the rear of a truck and climbed onto it as it was motoring along a major Dutch highway. What precious jewels inside were worth pulling off a dangerous late-night heist akin to those in big-budget action films?
A bunch of iPhones it turns out.
The men, aged between 33 and 43 and all from Romania, raided a truck on the A73 highway near the Dutch town of Horst. Once they got to the payload, one of them started throwing Apple iPhones into a cutout on the roof of the thieves’ modified van.
Dutch police seized the van and arrested five men who are now suspected of stealing €500,000 (about $590,000) worth of iPhones. Several similar incidents targeting flagship devices have been reported across Europe, but this is the first time police have made arrests.
Dutch police spokesperson Ed Kraszewski told the Guardian that officers had investigated other incidents, but questioned the feasibility of such a daring stunt. Now they know it can be done.
“The truck was taking its freight from A to B and did not stop,” Kraszewski said. “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.”
Authorities are now sending fingerprints of the suspects to other departments across Europe to see if previous crimes were conducted by the same group.
The suspects are to appear Tuesday before an investigating judge.
Romanian police released helicopter video of a 2012 raid, giving us a good idea of how this may have gone down. The footage shows a van driving right up to the back of a truck before a criminal jumps out, breaks open the door, boards, and steals goods.
Apple’s flagship smartphone has been the subject of criminal activity numerous times over the last few years. Earlier this year, a woman strapped 102 iPhones to her body attempting to smuggle them from Hong Kong into China. She fell short of the 148-iPhone suit one man was wearing when he was caught in 2015.
H/T Digital Trends
Phillip Tracy is a former technology staff writer at the Daily Dot. He's an expert on smartphones, social media trends, and gadgets. He previously reported on IoT and telecom for RCR Wireless News and contributed to NewBay Media magazine. He now writes for Laptop magazine.