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July 4, 2012

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Contents of stolen safe disappoint tired thief

A THIEF lugged a heavy safe all the way to his house and used every tool he had to open it.

But he didn't expect what he found inside: just over 13 yuan (US$2.05).

The suspect has been detained for breaking into a post office savings bank in May and stealing the money, city police said yesterday.

The thief, Gan Guoping, told the police that he was "inspired by the infamous theft at Beijing's Palace Museum last year." In that case, a thief cut the power, muted the security system and broke windows and walls to steal nine valuables in the museum in the heavily guarded Forbidden City.

The Shanghai case was discovered on the morning of May 1 when passers-by found a post office savings bank in Baoshan District had signs of a break-in, including broken glass. Police found one of four safes had been taken but nothing else missing.

The post office said there was 13.58 yuan, all in coins, inside the safe, which weighs more than 50 kilogram.

Police investigation found that the thief first broke in two office doors and disabled the alarm in the middle of the night. Gan also destroyed office surveillance cameras and took out the camera disks, police said.

Police used other surveillance devices and traced the suspect to a nearby residential complex. Gan, 33, who had a record of theft, was soon caught, police said. Authorities said he told them he saw a lot of money in the safes when he went to the post office to pay bills.

"My plan worked, even though I did not get the money," said Gan, seen in handcuffs in a police video.


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