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Priceless watch collection found under tree July 11, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Odd World.

Priceless watch collection stolen from Swiss Museum found under French Oak tree

A collection of exclusive timepieces worth millions of Swiss francs that was stolen from a watch museum has been recovered, officials said Monday.

French police found the watches in a bag beneath an oak tree near Valdahon, France, about 34 miles west of the Swiss border town of La Chaux-de-Fonds, where the theft occurred Thursday, the investigating magistrate of Neuchatel canton, Sylvie Favre, said.

Two men were arrested in France within hours of the heist at the Girard-Perregaux watch museum, but investigators made no announcement at the time so as not to jeopardize the search for the loot and a third accomplice, who remains at large.

Favre said Swiss authorities had made extradition requests for the two men of Balkan origin. “The way in which the culprits stole and transported these valuable watches indicates that they were not collectors themselves,” she said.

Last week Favre had said selling the haul would have been difficult because each watch was registered.

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