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Cops Say Thieves Stole $590K of iPhones in Daring Highway Robbery

The gang allegedly pulled up behind a moving truck, broke in, and smuggled the loot through their sunroof—all while whizzing down a highway in the Netherlands.
Foto oleh Blaine Franger via Getty

Last week, five Romanian men were arrested in the Netherlands after Dutch police found $590,000 worth of stolen iPhones in their possession. But rather than try to smuggle the devices by strapping them to their bodies, the men are suspected of committing a much more impressive heist—copping the smartphones from the back of a moving truck, the Associated Press reports.

According to the BBC, police believe the gang tailgated a truck loaded with iPhones as it was careening down a highway in the Netherlands. Allegedly, their SUV pulled up right behind the truck, and one member climbed out of the car's sunroof and onto the back. After breaking into the truck, the thief then reportedly took hundreds of devices and passed them back to an accomplice who was riding out of the sunroof, before scampering back to safety—all while both vehicles were moving.


Dutch news agency ED drew up a diagram of the alleged incident, and Gizmodo reports that the local press refers to the intricate trick as the "Romanian method." This specific kind of truck heist actually dates back a few years; video released by the Romanian police in 2012 captured thieves attempting to carry out the same dangerous procedure to no avail.

But last week's theft is the first time Dutch police believe the brazen "Romanian method" was pulled off successfully, according to the BBC.

"The truck was taking its freight from A to B and did not stop. Even so [the phones] were gone," Dutch police spokesman Ed Kraszewski said. "So it must have happened that way. And now we finally have the evidence, with the van and the loot."

Cops reportedly found the $590,000 worth of iPhones scattered around the suspects' hotel room in the Netherlands, before locating the SUV they used nearby. According to local police, the gang is also responsible for 17 similar truck heists in the area, Gizmodo reports.

All five men are scheduled to appear in front of a judge on Tuesday, and convicted or not, they might want to think about leaving a life of crime for work as Hollywood stunt doubles.