Lifestyle & Belief

Czech Republic: thieves steal 10-ton steel bridge for scrap metal


Prague is famous for its bridges: this photo taken on January 24, 2011 from the Saint Vitus Cathedral shows the Charles Bridge connecting the Old Town quarter and Mala Strana or Lesser Quarter over Vltava river after a snowfall.



Thieves in the Czech Republic stole a 10-ton steel bridge for scrap metal, in what Agence France-Presse called the latest case of scrap metal heists plaguing the country.

The group used a crane to dismantled the pedestrian bridge linking the western Czech villages of Loket and Horni Slavkov along with about 650 feet of railway track.

They even showed police officers conducting a routine patrol forged documents saying they were working on a new bicycle path.

The stolen metal is valued at around $6,300, according to the SZDC, a company managing Czech railway infrastructure.

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However, according to Britain's Daily Telegraph a railways spokesman, Pavel Halla, said that "the cost of replacing the bridge will run into millions." 

AFP wrote that the theft of scrap metal had become common in the Czech Republic owing to enticing sums paid by scrap dealers.

Metal thieves are usually from disadvantaged backgrounds, AFP wrote.

Elsewhere, Britain's Daily Telegraph reported last month that metal theft had cost the Church of England $16 million last year and the entire British economy around $1.24 billion a year.

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