Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann congratulates the successful investigation by the public prosecutor’s office and the police: Heavy blow against Dutch gang – Number of ATM burglaries in Bavaria declining – Better security of ATMs necessary
+++ Four arrests and nine searches on 27 September 2023 against ATM burglars from the Netherlands – Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann congratulates on the investigative success: “The Bavarian State Criminal Police Office, together with the Bamberg Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Baden-Württemberg State Criminal Police Office, has succeeded in striking another serious blow against an unscrupulous gang of ATM burglars!” Herrmann announced that the Bavarian State Criminal Police Office (BLKA) will continue to search for ATM burglars at full speed in the future: “The evidence and data carriers seized today will also be meticulously evaluated in order to find further accomplices or backers, if necessary,” Herrmann explained. “This will benefit from the fact that the police and judiciary in Bavaria are very well networked internationally.” +++
According to Herrmann, those arrested yesterday are suspected of having blown up ATMs with fixed explosives at at least six crime scenes in Germany since April this year, two of them in Bavaria. The total damage to property and loot caused was around 1.5 million euros. “The criminal gang worked highly professionally, but also absolutely ruthlessly,” emphasised the Minister of the Interior. In addition to high property damage, the blasts had also endangered residents and uninvolved third parties.
As the Minister of the Interior made clear, the problem of blown up ATMs had become much more serious in the past year. With 37 ATM blasts, a record number had to be recorded in Bavaria in 2022 (2020: 24 blasts, 2021: 17 blasts). Nationwide, there was also a record high last year (493). As early as 30 January 2023, the BLKA, together with the public prosecutor’s office in Bamberg and colleagues in Baden-Württemberg, the Netherlands and Belgium, succeeded in rooting out a gang of ATM bombers to whom more than 50 crimes in Germany with a total damage of more than ten million euros were attributed. “Since then, the number of ATM blasts in Bavaria has decreased,” Herrmann said. So far in 2023, 13 ATMs have been blown up in Bavaria (as of 26.09.2023), compared to 21 in the same period last year.
“However, there is no reason to sound the all-clear,” Herrmann emphasised. “Experience shows that unfortunately there are always unscrupulous imitators who get into the criminal business.” According to Herrmann, it is therefore all the more important that the banking industry and the vending machine manufacturers make it as difficult as possible for the perpetrators. He said that the measures taken in neighbouring countries and the decline in burglaries there showed how effective stronger precautions were in Germany as well. “ATM blasting must no longer be profitable,” Herrmann demanded. Less cash on hand and the use of special colouring and gluing systems that render the banknotes unusable would make it harder for criminals to do business.