A technical station was left without service due to the theft of wiring. The detainee is a 36-year-old man from San Pedro del Pinatar
The Civil Guard of the Region of Murcia developed the operation ‘Botrinca’, an investigation established to clarify the
theft of a large quantity of copper cable from a military facility in Cartagena, which resulted in the identification, location and
arrest of its alleged perpetrator, to which the alleged responsibility of the crimes of robbery with force and damages is attributed.
After the operation, which is framed ‘National Plan against the theft of copper’, the Civil Guard recovered all of the stolen copper cable, according to sources from the Benemérita in a statement. The events took place in mid-June at a magnetic and acoustic calibration station of the Spanish Navy, whose purpose is to measure and calibrate the magnetic emissions of the Navy ships, in which a large amount of copper and caused the station to be inoperative, with the consequent damage.
Members of the ROCA Team (against robberies in the field) and the Judicial Police Team of the Benemérita, upon having knowledge of the facts, opened the corresponding investigation in order to identify the perpetrator and retrieve the stolen material. The first steps of the operation were carried out at the scene of the events, where an exhaustive technical-visual inspection was carried out, as well as other procedures, and all possible indications of the ‘modus operandi’ and of the author of the theft were collected.
The investigation shows that the perpetrator accessed the affected military zone by climbing and from that upper plane disabled the station’s perimeter video surveillance cameras, to make it difficult to be detected. He then cut the cable, which was live, which caused a short circuit that disabled the electrical system of the facilities.
This way of acting shows that the perpetrator of the theft has extensive experience and considerable knowledge in the handling of live cables and electricity, as well as the use of appropriate tools in the field, since otherwise, there would probably have been suffered serious injuries during handling. Practically in parallel, the Civil Guards carried out a series of inspections in the metal waste management establishments in the area in order to locate the sale of the stolen cable.
This device paid off shortly after, when in one of these centers, among several tons of copper, all the stolen wiring was located, verified after its study and analysis, and verified by Navy personnel. The evidence obtained during the investigation led the civil guards to a man who, presumably, was behind the responsibility of the investigated events, for which a search device was established, which has culminated in his location and arrest as the alleged perpetrator of the crimes of robbery with force and damages
The investigation reveals that
the valuation of the stolen material, the damages caused in the installation and the damages caused to the Spanish Navy would exceed 270,000 eurosAll this without counting the damages that the fact that the ships have to travel to third countries to carry out the calibrations, while the station remains inoperative, entails.
The Civil Guard recalled that the crime of robbery with force, included in the Penal Code, arts. 238 and 240, has an associated penalty that is between one and three years in prison and that the penalty of two to five years in prison could be imposed when, as is the case, the fact affects pipes, wiring, equipment or components of infrastructures of electrical supply, of hydrocarbons or of the services of telecommunications, or of other things destined to the provision of services of general interest, and a serious breach is caused to them (art. 235 CP).
For the crime of damages (art. 263 CP), the penal code establishes that a penalty of one to three years and a fine of twelve to twenty-four months may be imposed, when the facts have caused damage of special gravity or affected the general interests , How is the case. The detainee -Moroccan, 36 years old and resident in San Pedro del Pintar-, together with the recovered effects and the proceedings carried out, have been made available to the Investigating Court of Cartagena (Murcia).