back to article Every little helps: Dirty MOLE BANDITS clean out Tesco ATM from BELOW

The movies tell us that tunnels are normally dug when a person locked behind bars laboriously scrapes away dirt with just a spoon to secretly set themselves free. Now some naughty scamps in Salford, Greater Manchester, have used the technique, not to escape, but to break their way into a shop to steal cash out of an ATM. …

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  1. FutureShock999

    If the perps are covered in soil, BUT don't get caught - was it in fact a clean get-away?

    These are the imponderables that keep me up all night...sadly.

    1. LarsG

      Watch out if you are a gardener...

  2. Khaptain Silver badge
    Happy

    The hole in the wall became the hole in the ground....

    Just for the sheer audacity and the risk I think that they have well earned their 86k. Would be interesting to know how much the operation actually cost, time, labour, electricity or candles, work boots etc.... They might actually have been better of simply getting a job......

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Obviously the were working at below minimum wage, so therefore they may be looking for East European miners.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        East European miners.

        This was the first thought I had, when I read about it last night. That said, 80 grand, even at 4 months' labour, split between two hard-working, bingo-splurging East Europeans gives them well over 10 grand a month. Not exactly a minimum wage, and you can't get that as an unskilled labourer, can ya? Even with four of them, 5 grand a month is not to be snubbed at. And think of the benefits - flexible working hours, you're your own boss, no tax to declare... Yes, the insurance policy in case of a misadventure is a bit flakey, and you might not get out alive, but hey, people risk their lives daily for less, eh?

        Admittedly, it's illegal, and highly immoral (though shall not steal from bankers, etc.), but in these times of economic hardship, I do applaud all the hard work. It's not like they clubbed a security guard and snatched his box, is it?

        ...

        and what does it all have to do with the Register? Ah, it was an ATM, I get it :)

        and Friday, we're into Friday...

    2. hplasm
      Happy

      There I was...

      Diggin' this 'ole

      'Ole in the ground,

      Big and sort of round it was-

      And then I found myself surrounded by the Plod, M'lud.

      1. veti Silver badge

        Re: There I was...

        You load 16 tons, what do you get?

        Another day older, and your share of 86 thousand quid...

        Not such a bad deal.

    3. Terry 6 Silver badge

      Effort!

      My own thought exactly. A fairly significant amount of time; dirty, dark and dangerous.

      All to grab less cash than a day or twos worth of bankers bonus.

      1. Goldmember

        Re: Effort!

        Effort, yes, but they got a fairly decent pay day from it, especially considering the area (if indeed they are locals).

        The same thing happened in Fallowfield (South Manchester) a couple of years ago. Fortunately (or unfortunately from their point of view) they chose to do it just after New Year before the thing had been refilled, and the monumental effort only got them about £6k.

        I remember listening to the radio at the time, and Mike Sweeney quipped how the gang would have made more money working minimum wage jobs over the time it took to dig that tunnel.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah for £86k I'd soil myself too....

    The perps managed to tunnel into the store overnight?

    Blimey that's impressive....that's the type of job it would take weeks for an engineering company to achieve!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ah for £86k I'd soil myself too....

      The article says they spent months. Presumably they drilled through the concrete floor overnight, but had all the rest of the dirt already moved.

      Depending how many months, and how many there were, they might have earned more money digging for a road crew than they earned from this.

      1. Richard 81

        Re: Ah for £86k I'd soil myself too....

        "...they might have earned more money digging for a road crew than they earned from this."

        Maybe, but this will be tax free.

    2. Tsung
      Joke

      Re: Ah for £86k I'd soil myself too....

      And cost way more than £86k. The preps did Tescos a favour*

      *assuming that Tescos wanted a hole new way into their shop.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ah for £86k I'd soil myself too....

      We've been waiting months for a job to be sorted up our road by the local council, I wonder if this lot are available for some more "cash-in-hand" work? I'm sure myself and the other residents in my road would make it worth their while!

  4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Happy

    I'd go to Merseyside

    Supposedly the home of feral scousers who dive into the sewerage system at the first sign of trouble.

    AKA "Ratboys."

  5. McHack

    DARPA is asking for it

    "What, this burrowing autonomous drone with cutting attachments that can bore through reinforced concrete and pick up stuff? Built it for a military contract, but honestly officer, I think the NSA wants it, to breach buried cables and stuff. Well, hope you catch those ATM thieves!"

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Facepalm

      Oh Noess

      ""What, this burrowing autonomous drone with cutting attachments that can bore through reinforced concrete and pick up stuff? Built it for a military contract, but honestly officer, I think the NSA wants it, to breach buried cables and stuff. Well, hope you catch those ATM thieves!""

      The last thing you need to give DARPA.

      Ideas.

  6. Chris Miller

    Wasn't setting up a vaulting horse outside the store a bit of a give-away?

    1. dogged

      And wandering out through Tescos with bags of dirt in your trousers.

      1. Mephistro
        Happy

        One of the guys had a big tattoo in which a plan of the facilities and the situation of all the special offers for this week was cleverly hidden.

        Remember, you read it here first!

  7. Blofeld's Cat Silver badge
    Trollface

    Hmm...

    "... under nearby wasteland ...

    I used to work round there, and unless things have radically changed recently, the "nearby wasteland" is usually called Eccles.

    They managed to miss the Bridgewater Canal as well.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not for the first time...

    There was also an occurrence of this in 2012 (I think) where a 100 ft tunnel was dug to break into a video store and about £10000 was nicked. GMP didn't manage to track them down either and have suggested it might be the same gang.

    So fellow Mancunians, keep your eyes open for blokes walking about and shuffling their feet just like in the great escape!

  9. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

    Maybe they had Johnny 5 help them!

    "Hello, Lucy, I'm home!"

  10. This post has been deleted by its author

  11. Roger Greenwood

    If only . . .

    the police found an informer, you know :- a mole

  12. NogginTheNog
    Coat

    A new type of ATM hack!

    I wonder if it was running WinXP?

  13. JimmyPage

    Dye bombs ?

    I thought the caddies were protected with those dye bombs that explode if you try and force them open ?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Die Hard... toned down.

    Plod deliberately detonates bombs in subway near the world largest gold bullion reserve, and promises to detonate more bombs in undisclosed public school, diverting police from near said gold bullion.

    Now tone it down a few hundred notches.

  15. Goobertee

    Precedent and clue

    Sherlock Holmes and the Red Headed League.

    Doesn't anybody read the classics?

    1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

      Re: Precedent and clue

      Jeremy Brett was in that one on ITV3 the other week. I didn't recognise the red-headed victim, but Scottish actor Richard Wilson played the role of "The League", whose name I've also forgotten. And it was explicitly organised by Professor Moriarty, unlike anything in the canon except for "The Final Problem", which ought to be next week, I suppose. Richard Wilson wasn't Moriarty, he was very scared of Moriarty. That was for a bank vault full of gold. I don't think Moriarty would have approved the operation in 2014.

  16. Mephistro
    Joke

    "You may have seen people acting suspiciously on Friday night, possibly covered in soil."

    A bunch of guys covered in dirt, staggering out of a hole next to a Tesco store on a Friday night?

    Local residents that saw them probably thought it was just another zombie outbreak. Business as usual.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Erm...

    Dodgy people in Eccles on a Friday...

    Come on GMP - narrow it down a bit as that describes about 70% of the people I see wandering about after a session in Hell or the cross ;)

  18. Rick Brasche

    86K of British money, on site, for an ATM, in a department store? That's a whole lot of $USTP!

    Most ATM's are filled with less than 5K (US) and if more is needed, it is delivered from the bank the morning it is loaded.

    Do they have 16 fully stocked ATM's in one store?

    Something smells dirty to me.....

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Quite impressive

    A 15m tunnel that looks like about 1m wide and about 1.5m tall, that's about 30 cubic metres of material, maybe 40 or 50 tonnes (depending on composition of spoil and moisture content), upwards of 10-11 skips to get rid of this.

    Its not an insignificant amount of spoil to loose - doesn't look like its been dumped on the waste ground by filling bags in the bottoms of their trousers either.

    And as Rick says above, 82k of GBP sounds like a hell of a lot for one cash machine to have in one go, I'd have thought about 8-9k would be more normal.

    Unless of course they just cut a hole in the bottom and waited to catch it as it was filled up over a few days...

  20. Graham Marsden
    Holmes

    "You may have seen people acting suspiciously on Friday night, possibly covered in soil."

    Well, as long as it wasn't night soil...

    Icon because (oh work it out yourself!)

  21. veeguy

    They should be on the lookout for "Danny, the tunnel rat"

  22. veeguy

    The should be on the lookout for Danny the tunnel rat.

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