Swedish police suspect Russia was involved in the large-scale theft of ice hockey equipment from a store in Uppsala earlier this month, according to national media.
Around 1.6 million crowns ($150,000) worth of hockey equipment was stolen from the ‘Sportringen’ store between November 5 and 6, including what owner Mats Loov described as “the best [equipment] we have.”
“It’s terrible. They picked the best sticks and then they moved on. It’s a bunch of top skates that are gone. We’re just down to a couple,” Loov said, according to Expressen.
Swedish media reported that police suspected the theft was a “commissioned work from Russia” because some big brands have interrupted the country’s supply because of the conflict in Ukraine.
The theft reportedly includes 100 pairs of skates and approximately 400 sticks from Bauer and Canadian brand CCM.
“It’s terrible if we’re a pantry for them. Given the lack of hockey merchandise they have, they can probably pay well for what we lost. Loov added.
Local police spokesman Jonas Eronen added: “The suppliers visited their dealerships and explained that such thefts could take place in the near future. There is nothing confirmed, but there is information in the preliminary investigation about it.
The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) was among the organizations to ban Russian and Belarusian teams from all its competitions following Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine.
However, the Russians continue to play in the North American NHL, which has shown no indication that it will sanction individual players.
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