Five arrested as Dutch police break up spectacular lorry heist gang: Telegraaf

Police badge and radio.

Five Romanian nationals were arrested in the Veluwe town of Otterlo this weekend in connection with a major investigation into spectacular lorry heists, the Telegraaf said on Monday.

The Telegraaf said the gang worked by tailgating their target lorry while driving on the motorway. When the vehicles were almost touching, one of the robbers would stand on the bonnet of the car and open the lorry doors. The lorry would then be then emptied of valuable electronic equipment, often without the driver noticing anything was going on.

Of the 17 lorry heists carried out using this method in Europe, five have taken place in the Netherlands, the paper said. Dutch transport lobby group TLN warned last year that thieves had started opening lorries in motion in the Netherlands.

Despite some sceptism that such a method would work, ‘we have information which indicates that robberies are indeed taking place like this,’ a police spokesman told broadcaster NOS.

The weekend’s arrests were made at a holiday park. Police also confiscated €500,000 in stolen iphones and cars which had been ‘specially prepared’ for the robberies.


This video, said to have been recorded five years ago at night from a Romanian police helicopter, allegedly shows an attempted robbery using the tailgate method.

Thank you for donating to

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation