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Toilet seats and taps stolen in German government office ‘heist’5th of June 2015
When German officials moved into their new government offices this spring, they were dismayed to discover that a team of burglars had been there before them - and had made away with all the toilet seats.
In fact every washroom throughout the €208 million building had been stripped of all removable items including toilet paper holders - and even taps.
The 'heist' at the interior ministry's new headquarters in Berlin came as a major embarrassment to the German government, particularly since the lavatory gang is believed to have struck before. In March this year, thieves stole all the washroom taps from the new Berlin offices of the BND, Germany's intelligence agency.
The more recent raid on the new interior ministry building occurred a matter of days before members of staff moved in.
"Many of the toilets are unusable," said one ministry employee. "The atmosphere is rather strained." Most of the missing items have now been replaced, but the identity of the gang behind the crime remains a mystery.
The latest incident caused considerably less damage than the attack on Germany's spy headquarters. In that burglary, the removal of taps led to a series of major leaks throughout the building. Millions of euros' worth of damage is believed to have resulted from the incident, which was quickly dubbed "Germany's Watergate" on social media.
When stealing taps from the interior ministry building in the latest heist, however, the burglars thoughtfully turned the water off first.