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Contortionist thief hides in luggage, steals from other bags, say police in Spain

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Luggage at airport
AP Photo
(CBS/AP) MADRID - Is this what happens when someone with criminal intent is also a bit of a contortionist?

Authorities in Spain say a man curled himself up inside a large suitcase that was repeatedly placed in the cargo bay of an airport bus, and then he'd sneak out to steal electronic devices from other people's luggage on the bus.

The man arrested last week was 5'10" tall and very thin, a police official in the northeastern Catalonia region said. An accomplice was also arrested.

The suspects were successful on several occasions before being caught, the police official said. The accomplice would place the contortionist crook inside the cargo bay of a bus running from the airport in the city of Girona south to Barcelona, board the bus and then retrieve him - inside the original suitcase - at the end of the line.

During the 60-mile ride, the man would slip out of the suitcase and use a sharp object to pick locks or open zippers to get into other people's luggage, police said. He stole objects including cell phones, laptops and GPS devices and would place them in a smaller bag that he brought with him.

The thief would then get back into the larger suitcase and when the bus reached its destination, the accomplice would retrieve both pieces of luggage.

Police say it was after alert bus riders reported items stolen from their luggage that they finally bagged the thief.

  • Barry Leibowitz

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