The number of ATM explosions in Lower Saxony fell significantly in 2023 compared to previous years. By December 6th, there had been 36 attacks on ATMs, as the Lower Saxony State Criminal Police Office (LKA) announced in response to a dpa request. In comparison, there were a total of 68 acts in 2022. This was the highest level in the past five years. The decline could have to do with increased protection and security measures by banks. According to the LKA, there were increased efforts by financial institutions on this point.

The State Criminal Police Office differentiates between attempted explosions, in which no money is stolen, and completed explosions. According to the information, in 6 of the 36 explosions in 2023, the perpetrators did not make any loot. While there were 45 attacks on ATMs in 2019 and 2020, the number rose to 55 attacks in 2021.

However, the authorities were unable to make any statements about the amount of damage. According to the LKA, the stolen sums will only be requested from the banks if there is an indictment and a court case. If criminals steal a lot of money, they often have to expect a higher penalty.

In the fight against vending machine bombers in Lower Saxony, a new central office was set up at the Osnabrück public prosecutor’s office last year. The officers collect information about the explosions and perpetrators and try to examine the structures behind them. According to the Osnabrück public prosecutor’s office, there were seven legal proceedings against ATM bombers across the country this year. 15 defendants were sentenced to prison sentences.

According to the LKA, the police have also had a “holistic combat concept” since 2022 to stop ATM bombers. Accordingly, there were several arrests in Lower Saxony and neighboring countries in 2023.

Despite the downward trend, the LKA is not giving the all-clear. “Basically, it remains to be seen how persistent this development is and whether the perpetrator groups will concentrate on other areas in the long term,” said a spokeswoman. In other parts of Germany, the number of explosions has not decreased to the same extent as in Lower Saxony.

According to the Bremen police, there was only one attempted ATM explosion in September this year until the beginning of December. Between 2017 and 2022, a total of 18 crimes were counted in Bremen and Bremerhaven. In 2022 there were the most crimes, namely 5. The Bremen police had no information about the amount of the loot.

Information about the central office in Osnabrück