Malaysian robbers' plan to blast open ATM goes awry

HULU SELANGOR - Robbers attempting to blast open an ATM at a bank in the quiet town of Bukit Beruntung brought down the ceiling at its service area and damaged several other machines. And, they got nothing.

A CCTV recording showed two men riding up to the bank on a motorcycle early yesterday morning.

One alighted without removing his helmet and placed a homemade bomb at an ATM machine.

The bomb exploded bringing down the ceiling, breaking glass windows and damaging other ATMs and deposit machines. It also set off the bank alarm.

An undetonated bomb outside the bank, was deactivated by a bomb disposal squad from the Selangor police headquarters at noon.

The bank's assistant manager, known only as Hue, said the explosion triggered the security alarm.

"Our bank headquarters was alerted about the incident at about 5am. I received a call from the headquarters and immediately lodged a police report," he said, adding that the branch had been operating since 1997.

Three ATMs, two cash deposit machines, two cash recycling machines and one check deposit machine were affected by the explosion, he said, adding that these had not been replenished since Friday.

Selangor deputy CID chief ACP Rooslan Radzi said the money in the damaged machines were intact.

"The ceiling collapsed due to the explosion, causing a mess in the bank's service area," he said.

"No money could be removed," he said, adding that no security guards were on duty at the bank during the incident.

"We were told that there were witnesses present at the time of the explosion," ACP Rooslan said.

"We urge them to come forward and assist us in the investigation."

The case has been classified as causing mischief by fire under Section 435 of the Penal Code.

Structural damages incurred from the blast were estimated to cost about RM500,000 (S$196,000).