Iced Tea Bottle Theft
(Zhejiang Province, China)
It all started when 43-year-old Zhang Hoa was scavenging for recyclable bottles around a warehouse in Wenzhou in China’s Zhejiang Province.Talk about dumb criminals!
He noticed that the warehouse door was unlocked and, on taking a peek inside, discovered the recycler’s equivalent of the Holy Grail: 30,000 pristine plastic bottles.
The only trouble for Zhang was that all the bottles contained iced tea. So he enlisted the help of three friends who, over the next 12 hours, unscrewed every bottle and poured the iced tea into a drain outside the warehouse.
From there the plan was simplicity itself – the men called a local plastic bottle collection firm to take the loot off their hands, and made off with a tidy £11 for their work.
Split four ways over 12 hours, that’s £2.75 each, or a little under 23p an hour.
It has to be said at this point that bottles of the iced tea sold for the equivalent of 66p, so Zhang could have made more if he stole a mere 17 bottles and sold them to his friends at market price.
Fast forward to when 38-year-old Liang Feng arrived at his warehouse, planning to pick up a pallet of the iced tea to sell to a customer. It would have been one of the all-time greatest facial expressions when he discovered his ENTIRE warehouse empty.