October 8, 2007 / 2:47 PM / 10 years ago

Shock burns cable thief beyond recognition

<p>A technician checks transmission cables in Baracaldo, Spain July 20, 2007. A thief in Germany was charred beyond recognition by a 10,000 volt electric shock when he tried to steal a live copper cable, authorities said Monday. REUTERS/Vincent West</p>

BERLIN (Reuters) - A thief in Germany was charred beyond recognition by a 10,000 volt electric shock when he tried to steal a live copper cable, authorities said Monday.

Police in the western city of Duisburg found the 32-year-old man’s blackened remains by a set of cable cutters and pile of non-live cables he had already stolen.

Only because one of his hands survived incineration were officers able to identify the man as German of Kazakh origin.

“His fingerprints were already logged on police files,” a local police spokesman said. “The force of the shock was so great that the hand was severed from his body.”

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