Airbag thieves strike on cue

Airbag thieves strike on cue
Thieves in the south east of Sweden acted on Wednesday exactly as police had predicted a day earlier -- they entered a car dealership and stole a number of airbags.

On Tuesday, Östergötland county police issued a warning about thieves specializing in the theft of airbags.

A day later staff at a Ford dealership in Linköping arrived at work to find that thieves had removed the airbags from a total of 28 cars. Most of the airbags were removed from the popular Ford Focus model.

“They broke the windows on the passenger side, probably to avoid having shards of glass on the driver’s seats. They then sat down in the driver’s seats and released the airbags,” manager Björn Bengtsson told the Östgöta Correspondenten newspaper.

Östergötland and other parts of souhtern Sweden have been hit by a wave of airbag robberies since the beginning of the year.

In February a man carrying 17 airbags was arrested in the ferry port of Nynäshamn.

Police believe that the thieves are selling the stolen goods on to foreign garages, thereby cutting the costs of repairing a crashed vehicle. When purchased through the proper channels, a Ford Focus airbag costs 8,000 kronor ($1,300).