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Russian man accused of stealing an entire road

9:42 PM, Aug 2, 2013   |    comments
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A Russian man faces up to two years in prison for stealing an entire road, the Russian Interior Ministry said this week.

The man, a 40-year-old resident of Syktyvkar, the capital of Komi Republic in the Northwestern Federal District, admitted having stolen 82 reinforced concrete slabs that make up the roughly 1-mile road linking the village of Parcheg with the Vychegda River, the Russian news agency RIA Novosti reported Thursday.

Police uncovered the highway robbery when they pulled over a convoy of three heavy trucks carrying the slabs, which they said had been removed with a manipulator, an industrial machine that combines a bulldozer and a forklift.

The Interior Ministry valued the slabs at 200,000 rubles, or about $6,095.

While it's unusual for an entire road to vanish, Russia's recent history is filled with thefts of other infrastructure, especially bridges, which are valued for their metal.

Most recently, a bridge over the Nozma River in the village of Frolovo, northeast of Vologda, was stolen in June - with a trail of tractor tracks leading to the culprit's home, the Interior Ministry reported.

The man, who authorities said painstakingly dismantled the bridge with a welding torch, could also face up to two years in prison.

NBC News

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