BONN · 16 persons are suspected of having stolen numerous bicycles in Bonn and the region in recent months and bringing them to Poland for resale. Bonn police seized 161 bicycles during raids on Wednesday.
After several months of investigation, Bonn police succeeded on Wednesday morning in striking a blow against an internationally operating gang of criminals specializing in the theft of bicycles. According to police, 16 suspects between the ages of 23 and 75 had stolen numerous bicycles in Bonn and the region in recent months and brought them to Poland for resale. Authorities have put an end to the illegal activity.
100 police officers from Bonn searched apartments and storerooms in Bonn, Alfter and Cologne. They seized 41 bicycles and other evidence. According to police spokesman Frank Piontek, there was a large operation on Kaiser-Karl-Ring in Bonn involving many police officers. A total of 38 bicycles were confiscated in Bonn, two in Alfter and only one in Cologne.
A 36-year-old was arrested as well on a previously issued arrest warrant for a narcotics violation. Police say that some of the suspects are drug users. According to police spokesman Piontek, the suspects include six Polish citizens who, as presumed buyers of the stolen bicycles, took care of the transfer to Poland.
At the same time, Bonn detectives together with the Polish police searched rooms in Kamienna Gora in Poland. So far, 120 bicycles and various bicycle parts have been seized there, which are believed to have been stolen in Bonn. The police operations in Poland are still ongoing. In the course of an initial inspection, ten two-wheeled vehicles have so far been concretely linked to theft in Bonn.
The owners of the bicycles will soon be notified by the detectives of the "Bike" investigation team. Later, an exhibition of the remaining confiscated bicycles is also planned. According to Piontek, the media will be informed of details in a timely manner. The investigations are ongoing.
Success for the "Bike" investigation team
The number of bicycle thefts in Bonn increased significantly last year. According to Bonn police, there were 3,175 stolen bikes last year. A "Bike" investigation group (EG) was set up on March 1. The goal of the four-man team is to reduce the number of incidents and increase the number of resolved cases. Initially, the Bike investigation team was to be active until October 31 and then the results would be evaluated. Based on that outcome, it will be decided whether the team can carry on to make life difficult for bicycle thieves.
Orig. text: ga.de