Mexican Officials Arrest Suspects Behind Radioactive Robbery

Five men taken into custody for allegedly stealing a truck transporting cobalt-60

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Henry Romero / Reuters

A container reportedly used to transport cobalt-60 (R) is seen at a home near where the dangerous radioactive medical material was found in a truck in the town of Hueypoxtla, near Mexico City December 5, 2013.

One week after a truck loaded with radioactive material was stolen near Mexico City, authorities have put five men whom they suspect of carrying out the robbery behind bars.

According to Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office, the suspects will be held in custody for a little more than a month as authorities continue their investigation. They were first taken for a medical checkup and tested negative for radiation poisoning, reports CNN.

The vehicle carrying the highly radioactive cobalt-60, which had been used for cancer treatment, was en route to a specialized waste facility when it was hijacked by armed gunmen last Monday.

The truck was recovered on Thursday more than 30 miles from the site of the theft after Mexican officials and the International Atomic Energy Agency issued an emergency alert about the incident. The toxic cargo was also recovered nearby.