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Mon 31 Aug 2015 11:50 AM

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Hotel safe thieves pose as tourists from the Gulf

Thieves used a hammer and chisel to remove the safes from rooms, smuggle them out in suitcases

Hotel safe thieves pose as tourists from the Gulf
Police officers patrol at the Trocadero Esplanade (also named Human rights Esplanade) in front of the Eiffel Tower on November 18, 2013 in Paris, while a frantic manhunt is underway after a 27-year-old fought for his life after being shot at the Paris offices of French daily Liberation and the shooter fled the scene. Just over an hour later, witnesses described shots being fired outside the headquarters of Societe Generale bank in the La Defense business district. Police is also checking a statement by a car driver who claimed to have been taken hostage by a gunman near La Defense and forced to drop him off close to the Champs-Elysees. Police could not immediately confirm a link between all of todays reported incidents but said that CCTV images of the shooter suggested he was the same man who had stormed into the Paris headquarters of news channel BFMTV three days earlier. (AFP/Getty Images)

Police in France have arrested two men suspected of stealing safes from hotel rooms by posing as tourists from the GCC and telling reception staff that they had lost their room keys.

Once the thieves, said to have posed as wealthy tourists from Gulf countries, were given replacement room keys, they used stethoscopes to listen at the door to make sure the rooms were empty.

French police say that the thieves used a hammer and chisel to remove the safes, mostly in high-end hotels in Paris and on the French Riviera. They then smuggled the safes from the rooms in hotel suitcases.

The two suspects, aged 56 and 31, were arrested at a hotel in Saint-last week, and were identified using surveillance video images from a previous theft. The police are said to have recovered $90,000 worth of jewellery, luxury clothes and currency.