With the keys hanging in the lock, the thieves broke the glass to let themselves in, threatening the lone security guard and cashier. Photo Édgar Chinchilla, La Nacion

Q COSTA RICA – The temptation was too great to resist. Or perhaps the two thieves had cased the place and surprised to find the keys in the lock of the main entrance door of  the Banco Nacional (BN), in San Rafael de Guatuso, Alajuela.

In any event, they made out with ¢16 million colones in the robbery took place around 5:00pm in the small bank branch located in the local cattle auction building.

The Organismo de Investigación Judicial (OIJ) said the men used the butt of a shotgun to break glass of the door, one of them put their hand through the hole to turn the key to enter.

Using the shotgun and another small weapon, they threatened the lone security guard and a cashier inside the small branch.

The OIJ says the thieves took off on their motorcycle, which they later abandoned on a dirt road in the town of Guayabo, two kilometres from the robbery site. Police assume they then got into another vehicle for the getaway.

Elder Monge, head of the local police detachment, said on learning of the robbery they organized road blocks and raided a Tilapia farm located in the area of the abandoned motorcycle. After identifying all the people in the fish farm, police learned they did not have the thieves.

Guillermo Quesada Rojas, manager of the farm, complained about the violent action of the police. “I don’t understand why they came in like that, without permission. If they had asked I would have opened for them to check everything out, we have nothing to hide,” he said.

The OIJ defended their actions saying the thieves wore helmets and covered their faces, their search of two men was with the only description they had, the two men were wearing black.

The bank branch is only open on Wednesdays, the day of the livestock auction. The money had been packed in special pouches used for pick up by the bank’s armoured car service, which arrived at 6:30pm, 90 minutes late.

Source: Nacion.com; OIJ