The ‘Arbeit macht frei’ sign stolen from Auschwitz last week has been found, reports BBC news. 5 men, in their 20’s and 30’s, have been detailed in northern Poland. The metal sign from the main gate had been cut into three pieces.
Andrzej Rokita, the local police chief in Krakow – where the men were being questioned – said the theft had been financially motivated, and it remained unclear whether it was carried out to order.
“From the information we have, none of the five belong to a neo-Nazi group nor hold such ideas.”
Pawel Sawicki, a spokesman for Auschwitz museum, said the recovery of the sign was an “enormous relief”.
“We are extremely grateful to the police who have done fantastic work. This symbol, probably one of the most important of the past century, can be put back in its place.”
Investigators said at least two people would have been needed to steal the 40kg (90lb) sign.
It beats me how they ever expected to be able to sell the sign, whether it was stolen to order or not. It is so recognisable, and with heightened security around Polish borders it would have been no mean feat to smuggle it out.