On Friday morning, a Russian tourist, aged 29, entered the only bank in the small town of Longyearbyen on Svalbard archipelago, in the Norwegian part of the North Pole. On approaching the bank staff, he pulled out a Mauser and pointed it at the employees, demanding a hefty sum of 70,000 Kroner ($8,000), the Svalbard Governor’s office said.
However, it appeared impossible to fulfil his plan in broad daylight, and the unfortunate robber was immediately arrested in the town of 2,000 people, where everybody knows each other like the back of their hand, and where 3,000 polar bears roaming around pose a greater threat than humans. The criminal appears to have also failed to work out possible escape routes, with a local airport being the only means of leaving the settlement during the ongoing lengthy polar night.
The heist was the first ever bank robbery in living memory in the world’s northernmost settlement on Norway’s remote Arctic archipelago of Svalbard. https://t.co/oMO5JRmLx6— Christian Mar (@soundspiderfool) 23 декабря 2018 г.
The Russian was transported to the town of Tromso on the Norwegian mainland, where he is due to be questioned. The governor admitted that the remote Arctic Archipelago is no longer free from crime.
While there was nothing weird about the arrested tourist carrying a gun, since everyone in the area is allowed to carry weapons on the archipelago due to a threat coming from polar bears, netizens instantly laughed it all off, wondering how on Earth he had planned to get away with the crime. One Twitter user even suggested he might have from the start had an ingenious plan of getting someone to transport him across the sea for free:
😝 I wonder how they were planning to get away: Man arrested after armed robbery at bank; believed to be first bank robbery in Longyearbyen’s history | icepeople https://t.co/Eh8tgX0G7F— Torkild Ulvøy Resheim (@torkildr) 21 декабря 2018 г.
Maybe he hadn't thought at all about escape, instead needed a free transport to the continent.— Robert Imgrat (@tauri_ne) 22 декабря 2018 г.
Others argued the man is indeed a laughing stock, and even posted maps to prove the point.
Someone tried to rob the only bank in Longyearbyen (pop 2000) on the island of Svalbard located close to the North Pole. Only reachable by ship or airplane and the second pic is the only possible area he could have been hiding 😂.— Pat (@VIPatriarch) 22 декабря 2018 г.
The first report I read (in Norwegian) mentioned three robbers. Which would be astounding. As if one robber in Longyearbyen (with nowhere to escape) would not be sufficient laughing material.— Torkild Ulvøy Resheim (@torkildr) 21 декабря 2018 г.