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Man Uses Vacuum Cleaner to Steal Coins

April 14, 2003
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STOCKHOLM, Sweden - There was plenty of change jingling in one Swedish man's pockets — but unfortunately for him, police saw him vacuum it out of a parking meter.

Mikael Persson, 44, has been charged with theft for sucking coins out of city-owned meters Feb. 17 in the southern city of Goteborg using a vacuum cleaner, according to court documents seen Friday.

Police said Persson used a pilfered set of keys to open the fronts of two meters, which take 1-, 5- and 10-kronor coins. Then, because the area holding the coins couldn't be cleaned out by hand, he plugged his vacuum cleaner into electrical sockets that, conveniently enough, are provided on Sweden's electronic parking meters.

He had emptied one meter and had started on a second when police saw him. In his pockets, they found coins worth more than 2,220 kronor (US$260).

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