13 January 2004
MADRID – A gang who stole a valuable collection of luxury watches in a raid on the home of Brazilian international footballer Roberto Carlos have been arrested, police said Tuesday.
The gang of Chileans are thought to have been linked to at least 12 other burglaries at luxury homes in Madrid.
The burglary of Roberto Carlos’ house took place on 3 January – the same day that he was playing for Real Madrid against Murcia at the Bernabeu stadium in the capital.
The footballer lives in a luxury home in the exclusive Madrid district of La Moraleja, just a few kilometres away from the ground.
The gang stole watches worth hundreds of thousands of Euros. One watch alone was valued at EUR 60,000.
Police sources said the gang have been linked to other similar crimes including wounding, stealing cars, threating behaviour and causing criminal damage.
Police named those arrested a Luis Alberto, a known criminal who has been accused of two other offences, Ruben Bernado, 33, and 22-year-old Roberto Carlos, who is no relation to the Brazilian footballer.
The police raided the house where the gang were living and found dozens of pieces of jewellery and watches, all from designer brands.
A special police unit had been tracking the gang for months and had evidence to link them to various burglaries and other crimes.
According to the police, the gang used an unusal amount of violence on victims.
The police also found a Cherokee Jeep which had been stolen and which some victims have said was used during various crimes.
The arrests came last Friday when police officers watching the gang’s house saw Luis Alberto and his girlfriend leaving with various bags and suitcases and heading for Madrid airport.
After arresting the suspects, the police found in the luggage of Alberto a number of gold watches and and some jewellery.
Hours later, the two other members of the same gang were arrested as they were prepared to get into the Jeep after a burglary.
Police found watches and jewellery.
Later they found some of the watches which were stolen from the home of Roberto Carlos.
But the police knew that the gang had taken other belongings of the footballer. They raided a store elsewhere in Madrid.
A 43-year-old man was arrested for receiving stolen goods and police found more of the valuables stolen from the footballers’ home.
[copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news