23. 10. 12. - 15:05
CCTV pics released of painting thief
Austrian police have released CCTV footage of the thief who walked into posh hotels in the capital Vienna and hacked valuable paintings out of the frames in the lobby before walking off with a the rolled up painting under his coat.
The man is believed to have struck several times and has been confirmed as the same person in at least 3 painting thefts at the posh Hotel Sacher and Hotel Imperial, making off with pictures worth over 20,000 pounds.
They include the painting After the Fire by Johann Matthias Ranftl, The Hunter by Leopold Fertbauer and a copy of the Raffael work The Holy Family.
A police spokesman said: "He goes into the hotel pretending to be a tourist but then when he believes nobody to be looking takes out a knife and cut the paintings out of the frame and then fights under his coat and leaves before anybody notices anything.
They said the pictures showed a man they believed to be between 40 and 45 years old and around 1 point 7 m high and with a very high forehead.
Anybody with information is asked to contact Vienna police on Tel. 01/3131-62800.