A network of shop robbers from Relay and Hubiz stations, which operated throughout France, has been dismantled and six Romanian nationals arrested, the Tours public prosecutor, Grégoire Dulin, announced on Friday.
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Six individuals, aged 18 to 54, were remanded in custody and are charged in particular for organized robberies, criminal conspiracy to commit a crime and money laundering.
They face 15 years of imprisonment.
According to the Tours public prosecutor's office, they are suspected of having committed 37 thefts in Relay and Hubiz brands, in Ile-de-France and in a dozen other departments.
The total damage is estimated at more than 700,000 euros.
The dismantling of the gang began one night in July 2020, with the arrest in flagrante delicto of three members committing a break-in theft in the station of Saint-Pierre-des-Corps (Indre-et- Loire).
Noting the increase in this type of theft in the territory, the Tours public prosecutor's office opened a preliminary investigation for acts of organized gang robberies and criminal associations.
The investigation was entrusted to the Central Office for the Fight against Organized Crime (OCLCO) of the Central Directorate of the Judicial Police (PJ) and the Tours branch of the Territorial Directorate of the PJ of Orléans.
After several months of investigation, the police were able to identify "
a team of experienced criminals, anchored in habitual delinquency, already known for multiple crimes and offenses in several European countries
Starting from a camp established in Stains (Seine-Saint-Denis), "
which served as a logistical support and place of concealment
", the suspects "
carried out nocturnal raids by small teams over a large part of the territory
", indicated the parquet.
Their booty consisted mainly of "
tobacco cartridges, game tickets and the chest containing the recipe of the day
According to police sources, the thieves specifically targeted these two brands, because the shops are always configured in the same way, with the same way of opening the checkouts.