NewsCrime Desk

Gardai investigating ‘Fast and Furious’ style heist of moving truck

Heist scene from The Fast and the Furious (Pic: Universal)
Heist scene from The Fast and the Furious (Pic: Universal)

GARDAI are investigating if the suspected robbery from a moving truck of tens of thousands of euro of high-end technological goods is linked to a similar crime in 2015.

Senior officers have received intelligence about an incident on a Co Cork motorway which happened shortly before Christmas.

The method used in the crime has been nicknamed by some police authorities as a “Romanian rollover”. A similar incident happened on the M7 in Co Laois almost two years ago.

Strangely, gardai have not received an official complaint in relation to the Co Cork incident, which involves the organised theft of products from a US multinational company.

In the so-called “Romanian rollover”, gangs of organised criminals in vans or cars chase their target along the motorway and pull up to the bumper so the driver cannot see them.

Gang members then climb out of a hatch cut into the roof and slide down the windscreen, on to the bonnet of their own moving vehicle.

They then break into the back of the target lorry using a crowbar.

The gangs form a human chain to pass the stolen goods back to the van via the hatch in the roof before escaping.

“These gangs target high-value products that are in transit in trucks on the motorway system.

They are going after goods that are low in volume but high in value,” a senior source said.

While details of the suspected Co Cork incident remain sketchy, officers are already trying to establish a link with an organised crime gang who stole €100k of cigarettes from a truck travelling at over 80kmh in a daring raid.

The theft occurred on a 50km stretch of the M7 motorway at around 5am on March 2, 2015.

Despite making progress in their investigation into that crime, Co Laois gardai have not yet made any arrests, even though they have seized cars connected to the gang.

There have been a number of instances of this type of crime across Europe in recent years, including a spate of about 50 such cases, which often involved decoy cars driving in front of the lorry to slow it down, being reported by police in northern Germany in 2013.