Greece nabs potato thieves from Bulgaria

Published 8:24 am Thursday, March 31, 2011

THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — The farmer had to stay up at night to guard his field, and get help from police, but he’s finally stopped the foreign marauders who were stealing his potatoes.

Five men and four women from neighboring Bulgaria were arrested early Sunday while digging up and loading 800 kilograms (1,760 pounds) of stolen potatoes into a van in Ochyro, a village in northern Greece near the Bulgarian border, police say.

The farmer, who was keeping an overnight watch for the thieves, got help from police and border guards after he lost 14 metric tons (15.3 tons) of potatoes the previous week.

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More than 200 empty potato sacks and digging forks were found in the van and confiscated.

Police are now looking for other thieves in the region — these ones targeting olive groves.