Man in wigs led string of thefts from French first-class prepare passengers | France

Police in Marseille try to trace down greater than 100 first-class prepare passengers from around the globe who had their baggage or wallets stolen by a gang whose chief would disguise himself in wigs.

When a girl leaving a high-speed prepare at Aix-en-Provence station earlier this 12 months reported to police that her bag containing €50,000 of jewelry had disappeared throughout the journey, station CCTV footage led to a months-long investigation. Police found what they known as an skilled operation by three thieves recurrently focusing on first-class carriages on high-speed trains.

“They have been completely organised,” the native police chief, David Brugère, instructed a press convention in Marseille.

The boys, of their 40s and 50s from Marseille and Good, have been “expert and fast”, he mentioned. “They purchased legitimate tickets to get on the prepare.” The boys had tickets for various routes together with Paris to Good, Paris to Marseille, and Lyon to Geneva. One would disguise himself in a wide range of wigs and girls’s clothes and sit subsequent to unsuspecting passengers. Subtly, that thief and two accomplices would take wallets, baggage left at folks’s ft or luggage left unattended, with out elevating suspicions. They then bought off on the subsequent station.

In a small flat close to Marseille’s Saint-Charles station, police discovered a stockpile of stolen items together with 150 items of baggage, 170 wallets, lots of of pairs of sun shades, fountain pens, digicam tools, devices and costly sneakers. Additionally they discovered €137,000 in small denominations of money. Officers mentioned they have been shocked that so most of the stolen items have been held in a single place.

Police consider there are not less than 170 victims unfold throughout France and overseas. The advanced process has now begun to attempt to hint the house owners of the stolen items. One sufferer, the proprietor of a €70,000 watch, was traced to San Francisco. His belongings had been stolen when he was heading to the Cannes movie competition in 2019.

Three males have been charged with theft and will withstand seven years in jail if convicted.

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