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Four men wanted over failed cash depot heist

Police have issued a nationwide alert after four men attempted to blast their way in to a secure cash depot in Växjö in southern Sweden on Friday evening.

Three masked men entered security firm G4S’ depot from the roof but left the scene empty handed. A fourth man waited outside in a car. Johan Petersson, head of security at G4S, said the aborted heist was captured by security cameras.

The men entered the office section of the building but were unable to enter the vault where the cash is stored.

First they attempted to break in through the door. They then attempted to cut their way in. Eventually they used explosives in a final bid to grab the cash.

“They had quite a lot of time since the police were late arriving,” said Johan Pettersson.

Shortly after the failed raid a car was spotted speeding northwards along Smedjegatan in the town.

“The car hasn’t been found yet. We think the perpetrators were using it but we don’t currently have any concrete traces,” Birgitta Fast at Kronoberg police told news agency TT on Saturday morning.

Police set up road blocks and observation points in an attempt to apprehend the thieves, but the active search was called off during the night as police focused instead on internal intelligence gathering.

Birgitta Fast said the police were also seeking to make contact with any eventual witnesses.

Police in Växjö received an anonymous bomb threat at around the time of the raid. A number of objects placed outside the gates of the police station were found on Saturday morning not to have been bombs.

“They were shot at by technicians and removed. They weren’t bombs,” said police spokesman Robert Loefell.

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DISCRIMINATION

Pub cleared for rejecting ‘Asian looking’ women

A pub in south central Sweden has been cleared of discrimination charges after bouncers denied entry to several women of Asian appearance in what owners claimed was an attempt to cut down on prostitution.

Pub cleared for rejecting 'Asian looking' women

The owners of Harry’s bar in Växjö, as well as six bouncers, had been charged with illegal discrimination after refusing to allow several Asian looking women to enter the establishment in 2012.

“My daughter and I were treated like prostitutes,” 44-year-old Merlita Malmström, one of the women involved in the case, told the Aftonbladet newspaper.

While prosecutors argued that repeatedly denying entry to the women due to their appearance was a clear case of discrmination, the Växjö District Court had a different opinion.

In a decision issued earlier this week, the court ruled Harry’s owners had a “legitimate reason” to stop to women in their efforts to curb suspected prostitution.

Police had information indicating that Asian women in the area were involved in prostitution, the court explained. Thus, denying the women entry had nothing to do with their appearance, but rather with suspicions of prostitution.

“No one was denied for a general reason, rather there were specific people who were denied due to concerns about criminal activity,” Tomas Malm, an attorney who represented some of the bouncers in the case, told the paper.

The court emphasized, however, that there was nothing to indicate the women who were barred from entering Harry’s were involved in prostitution.

The ruling nevertheless came as a shock to Malmström and other women involved in the case.

“I’m very upset. It makes me sick,” she told Aftonbladet.

“It was a traumatic experience. No one should be treated the way they treated us.”

At least one of the women plans to appeal the ruling, the TT news agency reported.

In addition, Sweden’s Equality Ombudsman (Diskrimineringsombudsmannen, DO) is monitoring the case.

TT/The Local/dl

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