Two more held as police look for second pilot

Prosecutors on Thursday requested remand hearings for two more men suspected of involvement in the dramatic helicopter robbery of a cash depot south of Stockholm. At the same time, police now suspect a second pilot may have been involved in the heist.

Two more held as police look for second pilot

The two men, aged 23 and 31, were arrested earlier this week in separate incidents, with remand hearings expected to take place on Friday afternoon in the Södertörn district court.

The younger of the two suspects has previously been convicted of serious fraud, while the 31-year-old has been found guilty of serious drugs crimes.

They are the seventh and eighth suspects to be held on suspicions of having a role in the September 23rd robbery of the G4S cash depot in Västberga south of Stockholm.

Three other men questioned in the case have been released, but remain suspected of involvement in the robbery.

Meanwhile, police sources tell the TT news agency that the 34-year-old helicopter pilot currently being detained on suspicions of flying the helicopter during the heist may not have actually been at the controls at the time the actual robbery took place.

Instead, police now believe his involvement was limited to having stolen the helicopter used in the crime from the heliport in Mellingeholm near Norrtälje, north of Stockholm.

Not only was the 34-year-old familiar with the area, but he had also trained at the Mellingeholm airfield in order to receive his pilot’s licence. In addition, he had also rented the helicopter in question on several occasions for his own recreational flying.

After stealing the chopper early that September morning, the 34-year-old is thought to have flown to the Stora Skuggan area of northern Djurgården, on the outskirts of downtown Stockholm.

From there, police believe, another pilot took over and flew the helicopter to the cash depot, where several men rappelled down onto the roof and made their way into the building by smashing a skylight.

The 34-year-old pilot then gave himself an alibi by getting into a car accident in the nearby Frihamnen neighbourhood at the same time the robbers were looting the cash depot.

The other driver in the allegedly staged wreck is a known “troublemaker”, according to TT’s source.

The source added that one of the first men remanded into custody for the helicopter robbery had made a number of telephone calls to a 41-year-old man, currently residing in Serbia, who was previously known as Stockholm’s ‘gangster king’.

The telephone calls were monitored by police and make up a significant portion of the evidence in the case.

Among other things, the conversations included discussion of how those involved in the robbery were highly irritated at the pilot for being too “blabby”.

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Teen girls tied to crime with pre-robbery selfie

Two teenage girls suspected of robbing a restaurant have been tied to the crime after police seized images from their phones showing the pair posing before a mirror wearing balaclavas and holding a knife.

Teen girls tied to crime with pre-robbery selfie

The two girls, who are cousins, are suspected of robbing a hamburger store in Halmstad, southern Sweden, in late March. During the robbery, the thieves had a large kitchen knife that they used to threaten the staff at the restaurant.

“Give me the money otherwise I’ll stab you,” they said, according to the restaurant chef account of the robbery, wrote the Aftonbladet newspaper.

“Calm down, I’ll open the till,” he responded.

The pair managed to get away with 2,420 kronor ($370), but were traced by police sniffer dogs back to their grandparents’ apartment, outside which a bag was found with the knife and balaclavas. The girls were arrested on the scene.

During the arrest, officers confiscated a phone on which they found pictures of the duo before the robbery wearing the balaclavas and holding the knife.

While the younger of the two girls is too young to be charged, her 17-year-old accomplice will stand trial on August 2nd. The seized pictures will be used as evidence against the teen, as will DNA traces taken from her balaclava.

TT/The Local/og

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