Confused German court frees twin heist suspects

19th March 2009, Comments 0 comments

The suspects were arrested two weeks after the incident, but because their genetic information is so similar, traces of DNA found at the scene of the crime did not provide conclusive evidence for trial or conviction.

Berlin -- Twins arrested in January under suspicion of having robbed Berlin's best-known luxury department store have been freed after confusion over which one of them was the culprit, a court said Wednesday.

"From the evidence we have, we can deduce that at least one of the brothers took part in the crime," the court wrote in a statement, "but it has not been possible to determine which one."

The daring heist, in which jewellery reportedly worth up to five million euros (6.5 million dollars) was stolen, took place in Europe's largest department store -- the KaDeWe -- in the heart of the German capital.

The robbers are thought to have abseiled into the shop through a skylight after hauling themselves up one of the awnings on the ground floor.

The brothers from Lower Saxony were arrested two weeks after the incident, but because their genetic information is so similar, traces of DNA found at the scene of the crime did not provide conclusive evidence for trial or conviction.

Investigations are still underway, the court said.

Last month, a pair of identical twins in Malaysia escaped being convicted and hanged on drugs charges, amid similar confusion.

AFP/Expatica

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