A group of thieves broke into a popular Ninja museum in central Japan and escaped after stealing a heavy safe that contained over a million yen (around Rs 7 lakh). The burglars carried out the heist within a matter of minutes in the early hours of Monday morning, the Guardian reported.
Police were called to the famous Iga-ryu Ninja Museum, located in the Japanese city of Iga, after an alarm went off once the thieves fled the scene. Law enforcement authorities found that the museum’s main office had been robbed and its entrance appeared to have been forced open with a crowbar, according to a report by BBC.
The stolen safe weighed around 150 kg, and contained money collected from more than a thousand visitors to the museum over the weekend. According to the police, the thieves were able to break into the establishment, and make off with the hefty safe all within three minutes.
Police officials who investigated the scene believe that the thieves waited for the museum staff to leave for the day on Sunday evening, before they broke into the office.
The museum’s security cameras captured a car pulling into the museum’s driveway and a man climbing out of the passenger seat, CNN reported. The man allegedly approached the camera and pointed it downwards to conceal the crime.
A museum official told CNN that the robbery took place just as visitors were beginning to return to the museum amidst the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “There’s a second wave now (coronavirus), but people were just getting more comfortable with all the corona precautions we were taking. This is really terrible,” he said.
Before the deadly virus gripped the world, the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum — dedicated to the history of the ninja and ninjutsu — was a thriving tourist hot spot, frequented by travellers and locals who were interested in the Japanese guerrilla warriors.