Lebanon News

Armed men rob bank, wound two customers, flee with $110,000

A statement from SGBL said that only one person was wounded. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)

BEIRUT: Armed men robbed a branch of Societe Generale de Banque au Liban in Kfar Shima, south of Beirut, Tuesday afternoon, making off with $110,000 in cash and wounding two bank customers.

Security sources identified the victims as Zaher Ahmad Zaidan and Maroun Jerji, both of whom were clients of the bank. They were taken to a local hospital to be treated for gunshot wounds to the legs, the sources added. But a statement from the bank itself said only one person was wounded.

The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Daily Star that two armed men, wearing motorcycle helmets, walked into the bank at around 1 p.m., shooting randomly.

The two men then jumped onto a motorcycle they had parked outside and sped off in the direction of Hay al-Sellom in Beirut’s southern suburbs, according to the sources.

Originally sources said the robbers stole some $50,000 and LL40 million, the equivalent of $76,600 in total, but a later statement from SGBL said that $110,000 was stolen.

Sources added that the robbery closely resembles a recent heist at the Banque Libano-Française branch in Dbayyeh, north of Beirut, on June 26.

In the June incident, an armed man, also wearing a motorcycle helmet, entered the bank before firing a single gunshot in the air, threatening to kill anyone who moved and demanding staff open the safe, which contained an estimated $100,000. Outside, another man, also wearing a helmet, was waiting on a motorcycle.

Tuesday’s incident is being investigated by authorities and SGBL says it has handed over CCTV footage to the police.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 04, 2012, on page 4.




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