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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Manhunt on for ‘brutal’ robbers

Police in the Oslo area were intensifying their search for several men, believed to be foreign, who have robbed and assaulted elderly victims in their own homes. Police describe the robbers as “brutal” and had to set three suspects free on Thursday.

The police had arrested two men and a woman from Romania on Wednesday, believing they answered the description of persons who beat and robbed an elderly couple living at Billingstad, west of Oslo, on Wednesday morning.

The assault occurred in the middle of the day, around 11:30am, after three men rang their bell and asked for water. When the couple let them in, the three men attacked, leaving the elderly man of the house, in his 80s, with serious head injuries. His wife was also beaten before the intruders stole their bank cards and other valuables and fled.

The robbery at Billingstad followed a similar robbery on Monday in Langhus, south of Oslo. In that case, three men also came to the door of an 84-year-old woman’s house and asked for water. When she obliged, they beat her and ransacked her home, stealing her wallet, watch and mobile telephone among other items.

Police pulled over a Bulgarian-registered car in Ås, south of Oslo, late Wednesday afternoon and brought its three occupants from Romania in for questioning. They were released on Thursday, however, after police couldn’t connect them to either robbery.

Investigators have given the robberies high priority, are asking the public for tips and warning elderly residents against opening their doors to any strangers.

“We’ve seen a clear connection between the cases and they’re using exactly the same methods,” said Nina Bjørlo of the Asker og Bærum Police District. “None of the men has even tried to hide their face during the brutal robberies.”

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