New witnesses found in helicopter heist case

Deputy prosecutor-general Kerstin Skarp has decided to re-open the preliminary investigation into the case of Alexander Eriksson, who was found guilty of piloting the chopper in the 2009 helicopter heist.

New witnesses found in helicopter heist case
Police footage from inside the G4S security depot in Västberga, south Stockholm.

“This is a very positive development,” Eriksson’s defense lawyer Ragnar von Bentzeen told daily Aftonbladet.

Three years ago, a stolen helicopter landed on the roof of the G4S security firm depot in Västberga in southern Stockholm and three armed men smashed their way into the building through the atrium window on the roof.

The robbers then deployed explosives to blast open a series of doors and make their way in to the depot’s cash reserves.

After 20 to 25 minutes, the men loaded up the helicopter and disappeared.

The first of the men and a section of the loot were deposited in the Draget district in the Norsborg suburb, before a second drop-off was made at Kaananbadet beach in the Bromma area.

The abandoned helicopter was later found in Skavlöten to the north of Stockholm.

Only 56,000 kronor ($7,793) of the reported 39 million kronor ($5.3 million dollars cash stolen by the thieves has since been recovered.

Eriksson denied his involvement in the heist from the very beginning, claiming to have been high on drugs at the time of the robbery but was subsequently found guilty and sentenced to 8 years in prison.

There is footage of Eriksson at 6.50 entering a McDonald’s eatery in Täby, a suburb of Stockholm.

Witness statements claimed to have heard and seen the helicopter around the landing site in Arninge just after 6am on the day of the heist.

But according to Norrtelje Tidning, new evidence suggests that the chopper didn’t touch down on the site until 7am – when the alleged pilot couldn’t have been in the air.

The prosecutor-general has decided to re-open the case and want to call six new witnesses, according to the paper.

“It is fairly unusual for these kinds of cases to be re-opened so there must be something of substance that they have uncovered,” Bentzeen told Aftonbladet.

According to the lawyer, his client is very pleased with the developments.

Prosecutors in Stockholm will now hear the new witnesses and decide if the case should be re-tried.

The Local/rm

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German police arrest fugitive twin over Dresden museum heist

German police said Tuesday they have arrested one of two fugitive twin brothers from the so-called Remmo clan wanted over their suspected role in snatching priceless jewels from a museum in the city of Dresden.

German police arrest fugitive twin over Dresden museum heist
Archive photo from April 2019 shows the Jewellery Room of the Green Vault. Photo: DPA

The 21-year-old suspect was detained in Berlin on Monday evening over what local media have dubbed one of the biggest museum heists in modern history, a spokesman for the police in the eastern city of Dresden said.

The twins had eluded German authorities when they carried out raids last month and arrested three members of the Remmo clan, a family of Arab origin notorious for its ties to organised crime.

Police then named them as 21-year-old Abdul Majed Remmo and Mohammed Remmo.

All five suspects are accused of “serious gang robbery and two counts of arson,” Dresden prosecutors said.

Police did not immediately name the arrested twin. His brother remains on the run.

The robbers launched their brazen raid lasting eight minutes on the Green Vault museum in Dresden's Royal Palace on November 25th, 2019.

READ ALSO: Everything you need to know about the Dresden museum heist

Having caused a partial power cut and broken in through a window, they snatched priceless 18th-century jewellery and other valuables from the collection of the Saxon ruler August the Strong.

Items stolen included a sword whose hilt is encrusted with nine large and 770 smaller diamonds, and a shoulderpiece which contains the famous 49-carat Dresden white diamond, Dresden's Royal Palace said.

The Remmos were previously implicated in another stunning museum robbery in the heart of Berlin in which a 100-kilogramme gold coin was stolen.

Investigators last year targeted the family with the seizure of 77 properties worth a total of €9.3 million, charging that they were purchased with the proceeds of various crimes, including a 2014 bank robbery.

READ ALSO: €1 million gold coin stolen from iconic Berlin museum