Thieves use cat­a­combs in Paris to steal wines

The Province - - NEWS / WORLD -

Thieves have re­moved 300 bot­tles of fine wines worth $375,000 from a cel­lar in cen­tral Paris af­ter break­ing into the trove of vin­tages from the cat­a­combs, a maze of mainly off-lim­its tun­nels un­der the cap­i­tal.

The ap­par­ently well-in­formed thieves first broke into the cat­a­combs from one of many se­cret or sealed en­trances around Paris and drilled a hole through the cel­lar wall of the prop­erty near the Lux­em­bourg gar­dens, which houses the French Se­nate.

Af­ter steal­ing the wine, they qui­etly van­ished back un­der­ground, po­lice said.

“One can as­sume that they had made re­con­nais­sance mis­sions and that the crim­i­nals didn’t drill through this wall by chance,” one po­lice source told France Soir.

A spokeswoman for the Paris pros­e­cu­tor said: “The own­ers just dis­cov­ered the theft but it could have taken place any time be­tween late July and late Au­gust.”

“We’re talk­ing about very, very good wine worth be­tween €500 and €1,000 per bot­tle,” she said. “It ap­pears they made their get­away back down the cat­a­combs. The ju­di­cial po­lice of the 3rd district have launched an in­ves­ti­ga­tion, search­ing both the cel­lar and the tun­nels be­low,” she said.

The cel­lar was un­der a block of flats in Rue d’As­sas, which runs right next to the Lux­em­bourg gar­dens.

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