Robbers steal millions of euros from Albania’s main airport

Police confirmed a sum of money had been stolen but did not say how much. (Shutterstock)
Updated 10 April 2019

Robbers steal millions of euros from Albania’s main airport

  • One of the robbers was shot dead in an exchange of fire with police about one kilometer from the airport
  • Albania-based foreign banks ship out hard currency via air through Rinas airport to Vienna, because the central bank does not accept their deposits of hard currency

TIRANA: Albanian police arrested four people and questioned 40 others late on Tuesday after armed robbers stole millions of euros from an Austria Airlines aeroplane in a deadly heist.
Armed men broke onto the runway of Tirana airport earlier Tuesday and stole the money due to be transported to a bank in Vienna, police said.
Foreign banks operating in Albania send their hard currency to Vienna because Albania’s central bank does not accept such deposits.
One of the gunmen was killed in an exchange of fire with the police.
The robbers entered the runway of the international Mother Teresa airport through a gate used by firefighters.
Police said three armed robbers dressed in military fatigues showed up and threatened the employees handling luggage, eventually stealing the money.
According to initial reports, the amount stolen was some 2.5 million euros ($2.8 million), but local media claim it could be a five times higher.
Austrian Airlines spokeswoman Tanja Gruber said the cash was being loaded when the robbery happened.
“Boarding had just taken place. There was never any danger for crew and passengers,” she said.
The plane’s departure was delayed by nearly three hours.
As a security measure, there will be no further cash transfers from Tirana to Vienna, she said.
Robbers have staged such heists at least two more times in last three years at the airport.
 


Armed men attack presidential residence in Somalia’s capital

Updated 38 min 55 sec ago

Armed men attack presidential residence in Somalia’s capital

  • Police killed at least 3 of the assaulters, while gunshots were heard near the area

MOGADISHU: A Somali police officer says at least five heavily armed men attacked security forces stationed outside the presidential palace in what appears to be an attempt to storm the heavily fortified residential and office complex.
Security forces repelled the assault and killed at least three of the attackers while gunfire could be heard in the area nearby, said Capt. Mohamed Hussein.
Two of the attackers have moved to positions at the nearby parking lot of the SYL hotel amid gunfire. They’ve not managed to penetrate the hotel compound and gunfight is still going on, said Hussein.