• Austria's news in English

Colombian woman stole from Austrian banks

The Local · 29 Aug 2014, 16:29

Published: 29 Aug 2014 16:29 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The woman, 34, confessed to robbing banks in Salzburg and Carinthia. She belonged to a criminal organized gang.  

Her first big robbery was in November 2011, in Salzburg’s Spängler Bank. Together with another Colombian, who’s already serving a two year prison sentence, she distracted bank employees by speaking “gibberish English” and Spanish.

The pair managed to steal an envelope containing nearly €47,000 euros, which had just been delivered from another bank. By the time the employee noticed it was missing the Colombians were long gone.

The woman was also involved in the robbery of a Raiffeisen branch in Villach in March 2012, where €77,000 was stolen and a Zveza Bank in Klagenfurt in June 2012, where €60,380 was stolen. She was also involved in robbing jewellery stories - bringing the total amount of money stolen to €210,000.

She and her co-thief had been recruited by a criminal organization at the age of 16. As a reward for their crimes the woman, who had three aliases, said they were each given €3,000 or €4,000 euros.

"I was told to take the money. The value of it didn’t interest me. I did this in order to feed my daughter, so I could send money home," she told the judge.

Story continues below…

Her lawyer said that she did not live a life of luxury but sent money home, to her ten-year-old daughter and her seriously ill mother. "She was just a small cog in a large organization," he said. If she had refused to commit the crimes, she would have been punished, he claimed. She left school at the age of 11 and never had a job - “all she learned was shoplifting”, her lawyer said.

For more news from Austria, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
'Horror clown' threatens bus driver in Vienna's Donaustadt
Pennywise, the original scary clown from the movie It. Photo: Warner Bros

A man disguised as a ‘horror clown’ threatened a bus driver in Vienna’s Donaustadt district and vandalised the bus.

Man lived with body of murdered lover for weeks

A man has been arrested in Graz after police discovered the body of his girlfriend hidden in the shower cubicle of their rented apartment.

Austrian far-right leader brands Merkel 'dangerous'
Heinz-Christian Strache. Photo: Facebook/Personal

The head of Austria's far-right Freedom Party has branded Angela Merkel Europe's most dangerous politician.

Austria 'horror clown' attacks leave several injured
Clown performers are not happy about the negative media stories. Photo: Graeme Maclean/Flickr

Several people have been injured in attacks by masked assailants dressed as 'creepy clowns' in the lead-up to Halloween.

Brunnenmarkt murder 'could have been prevented'
Locals remember the murdered woman. Photo: Wien Caritas

The random murder of a woman in Vienna could have been prevented if the homeless and mentally disturbed man who killed her had been admitted to a psychiatric institution.

Iraqi family ask ECJ to help them stay in Austria
Kumberg locals hold a vigil for the family. Photo: ORF

A group of people from Kumberg in Styria have asked the European Court of Justice (ECJ) for help in trying to stop the deportation of an Iraqi family.

The Local List
Five things you need to know about winter tyres
Photo: carmagazine.co.uk

It’s that time of year when temperatures start to plunge and drivers are advised to switch to winter tyres to avoid being caught out by snow and ice on the roads.

Radioactive uranium rocks on display in Austrian schools
Uraninite crystals. Photo: Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com/Wikimedia

Education officials have carried out urgent checks in schools across the country after one of the stones on display in a classroom turned out to be radioactive.

Austrian churches slam far-right's 'God' slogan
Campaign poster for Norbert Hofer. Photo: Paul Gillingwater

Austrian church officials have denounced far-right presidential candidate Norbert Hofer for "instrumentalising" God in a new slogan.

'Scary clown' pushes 14-year-old off his bike in Salzburg
Generic photo: Graeme Maclean/Flickr

A 14-year-old boy in Salzburg has been injured after being pushed off his bike by an individual dressed as a scary clown.

12 brilliant German words you won't find in English
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Five films which will change your mind about Austrian cinema
Those surprising Austrians!
100 years since the last emperor's death
Afghani family's new home in Austria
Der you learn Deutsch?
Delighted by the light
Beware these passport scams
Of course we skipped Oarsch
Foodies rejoice at the choice!
Travel & Tourism
10 years after her escape from captivity
Surviving the Brexit for British expats
Day 2 of the World Bodypainting Festival 2016
Is Islam hostile to Western society?
Bodypainting festival in southern Austria
Europe's ice cream capital
Best Austrian beauty spots
Travel & Tourism
Three days in Vienna as a tourist
How to make friends in Austria
jobs available