Thieves dig 30m tunnel to ATM

Police have not said how much was stolen from the cash machine. Photo / Thinkstock
Police have not said how much was stolen from the cash machine. Photo / Thinkstock

Thieves in England have gone to extreme lengths to get their hands on some money by digging a 30-metre tunnel under a building to get to a cash machine.

Detectives, who recently discovered the tunnel, believe the criminals responsible could have spent up to six months digging the passageway.

Police have not yet revealed how much money was taken in the daring heist but it is believed the gang may have only got away with "limited funds".

The theft happened some time between 5.30pm on Monday, January 2 and Tuesday January 3 at a cash machine in a Blockbuster store in Manchester.

The thieves dug the tunnel from a railway embankment at the rear of the shop, which then went under a car park and beneath the foundations of the store.

The passageway was around 100ft in length and around 4ft tall.

It had also been fitted with lighting and roof supports.

The tunnel was dug directly underneath the cash machine, where the offenders then used machinery to cut through more than 15 inches of concrete to steal money from the ATM.

The thieves then made their getaway back down the tunnel.

Detective Sergeant Ian Shore, from Longsight CID, said: "In all my years of service, I have never seen anything quite as elaborate as this.

"These people had obviously spent a long time plotting this crime and I doubt they would have been able to keep their plans secret for all that time, without telling others about their scheme.

"They must also have spent a lot of time in the area over the past few months, which people may have noticed.

"The financial detriment to the victim could have been a lot worse, and the offenders did not get away with as much money as I believe they may have originally hoped. The machine had limited funds available."

He added: "I would ask that anyone who may have noticed anything unusual around this Blockbuster store, or who may have seen or heard anything they think might help us with our investigation, to get in touch."

-AAP

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