KaDeWe heist suspects released because of twin DNA
Published: 19 Mar 2009 11:51 GMT+01:00
Updated: 19 Mar 2009 11:51 GMT+01:00
Five weeks after their arrest, Berlin police have released two suspects in the spectacular robbery of the city’s KaDeWe department store because DNA tests can’t tell the identical twins apart, daily Berliner Morgenpost reported on Thursday.
Hassan and Abbas O. were released from a Moabit district jail on Wednesday, despite the fact that police are convinced that at least one of the 27-year-olds left DNA traces at the scene of the sensational robbery from the store’s Christ jewellery shop on January 25.
“Identical twins come from the same egg, so their genetic characteristics do not differ,” Karl Sperling, head of the human genetics institute at Berlin’s Charité hospital, told the paper, adding that new techniques for determining differences are not yet accepted by courts.
The paper suggested that the twins, already known to police for their Lebanese family’s connection to the Berlin red light scene, were merely low-level accomplices in a highly organised crime. Police are still baffled as to how three masked men were able to get past motion sensors and alarms to make two trips in and out of the grand old department store with €6 million in jewellery and luxury watches.
A relative told Berliner Morgenpost that upon their release the twins were “proud of and thank the German legal system.”