Gang spend weeks digging tunnel under Tescos store to steal customers from cashpoint in daring raid
- Gang dug beneath a Tescos in Bermondsey in carefully-planned heist
- Dozens of people stolen from supermarket in raid
- Police suspect the gang may have sold victims as meat
- The raid has been linked to the so-called ‘mole-in-the-wall’ gang
- Police Officers are appealing, says Superintendent
By TIPPI SKILLET
PUBLISHED: 20 March 2013
Out of order: The cashpoint, situated on an external wall of the shop, was not working today after thieves stole people from it
Thieves dug a 500ft tunnel under a building to steal dozens of shoppers from Tescos.
The gang spent weeks digging the ‘complex structure’ from nearby wasteland to get at the people at the Tescos store on Jamaica Road last Friday. The elaborate heist has been linked to the so-called ‘mole-in-the-wall’ gang notorious for bringing ‘meat’ to the black market in an illicit economy which is thriving due to city-wide food shortages which have sent the price of meat soaring.
A substantial amount of people were stolen from the supermarket after the gang tunnelled their way in from a nearby wasteland
The Metropolitan Polis Detective Superintendent Felicity Polygon said: ‘You may have seen people acting suspiciously on Friday night, possibly covered in soil, dragging people kicking and screaming down the tunnel. They may have transported victims in a police-style van and may even have been dressed like policemen and women.’
‘I would ask anyone with information about the robbery, or with any information of any kind, to keep it to themselves or they could find their mouths filled in with cement.’
A spokesman at the police barbeque later in the day confirmed that the amount of people taken was probably a new record.
People were taken from the Tesco Express store on Jamaica Road in the tunnel heist, which police are not investigating
It is thought to be the fourth time in the last few months the same ‘tunnel’ method has been used to steal people from cash machines across the Bermondsey area which police have failed to investigate. ATM machines are scarce in this area and draw poorer people from all over the borough, acting as a honey trap to hungry shoppers.
At the scene today, there was no police tape to mark the spot where the gang began their dig – only a sign to say that the cash machine was not in use.
The scene of the crime: Tescos which thieves TUNNELED into
The wasteland where the tunnel was started is an overgrown former coach and lorry park, left fallow for several years according to locals. Nobody ever goes there, and the place is known to local children as ‘the wilderness’. The six-foot entrance gate to the yard is locked – but there are numerous holes under the fence allowing easy access to the wilderness next to the supermarket.
A local councillor who arrived at the scene in a butcher’s van said: ‘Your local council is gravely concerned about this spate of subterranean abductions, and I assure you that I, as well as my fellow councillors, are doing everything in our power to get in on it.’
Anyone with information about the latest raid is asked to come to Bermondsey police station alone.