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August 4, 2012

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Quick-hit thieves targeted downtown apartments

THREE suspects in a theft ring broke into eight apartments in Shanghai downtown districts and made off with valuables worth nearly 500,000 yuan (US$78,450) in only two days in June, city police said yesterday, announcing that they'd cracked the ring and arrested the suspects.

Police said the three men had a history of similar crimes, in which they picked downtown residential compounds, spent two days stealing and quickly left the city.

Police said they usually posed as salesmen, knocking on the doors to make sure no one was home. While two were breaking in, the other would stay connected with them on a phone to watch the corridor, police said.

On June 18, police were called after an apartment inside a housing compound on downtown Zhongtan Road was cleaned out. The residents reported losing jewelry and cash.

While investigators were at the theft scene, the thieves were breaking into several other apartments inside two other residential complexes nearby, according to crime reports.

Police narrowed their investigation to the three suspects after poring over surveillance clips. They went to the men's hometown in Jiangxi Province and arrested them on July 12.


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