Securing evidence at the scene of the crime in Langgöns, Hesse, in February 2013: more than three million euros in damage to property at the banks
Photo: Boris Roessler/ dpa
On the night of February 28th they struck again.
This time three men came in a black Audi RS with German license plates.
Their destination: the ATM of a Sparkasse branch in Melle near Osnabrück.
The force of the detonation at 1:25 a.m. was so great that the glass front of the anteroom, including the frame, was thrown onto the street.
The perpetrators cleared the ATM.
They then gave themselves a chase with the police, via the A30 westbound, then onto the A1 northbound, where the fast Audi crashed into a spiked belt near Osnabrück.
The men were able to escape on foot.
Yesterday someone who is said to have been there was arrested in the Netherlands.
A suspected partner from Meckenheim has been in custody since March.
Undercover investigation at rental car company
In a "Joint Action Day" on Tuesday, around 100 police officers from Lower Saxony, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Hesse and the Netherlands took action against the automatic sprinkler scene.
Searches were carried out at a total of 16 residential and business addresses in Germany and the Netherlands.
Another twelve suspicious objects have already been searched in the past few weeks and months.
Undercover investigations preceded the attack on the automatic sprinklers.
According to SPIEGEL research, the focus was on a rental car company.
She specializes in high-horsepower, fast cars and is said to have rented them to the alleged automatic sprinkler.
One of these cars was apparently the black Audi RS 6 that was used in Melle.
Stolen license plates and duplicates recovered
Several of the alleged ATM blasters come from the greater Amsterdam area.
A total of 13 suspects have since been arrested.
They are said to be responsible for at least twelve crimes in 2021 and 2022 and, according to SPIEGEL information, stole 1.1 million euros.
The damage to property at the banks is significantly higher at three million euros.
During the raids, the investigators seized around 80 mobile phones in addition to data carriers, tablets and PCs.
In the Netherlands, they found stolen license plates and duplicate number plates.
In addition, they confiscated an Audi S 5 and a motorcycle worth around 40,000 euros as part of the "value skimming", according to the police.
"We must do everything we can to discourage criminals from committing such crimes," says Michael Maßmann, President of the Osnabrück Police Department.
He is certain that word of this joint action by the security authorities will get around among the perpetrators.
The police had already taken action against the Dutch ATM demolition scene with raids and arrests last autumn.
At that time, the officials in Utrecht had discovered a test center with original German ATMs, where the perpetrators could practice the demolitions.
The perpetrators now use solid explosives almost exclusively, which explains the severe damage to the buildings.