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Explosives, Military Weapons Still Being Stolen From Army

Mon., Dec. 22, 1997

Even though the number of cases has declined slightly, explosives, automatic rifles and other military weapons continue to be stolen from Army bases, a newspaper reported Sunday.

The Army initiated 111 investigations into stolen or missing weapons in 1995 and 1996, the Dayton Daily News said.

Some of the thefts were committed by soldiers and others with access to bases, the Daily News said. In some cases, the military was unaware weapons were missing until civilian police recovered them.

Thirteen cases involved M-16 automatic rifles, one of them equipped with a grenade launcher. At least 20 additional cases involved plastic explosives, TNT, dynamite or other explosives. Nine more cases involved grenades or grenade launchers.

Between 1991 and 1994, the Army averaged one theft investigation per 9,586 soldiers. The rate fell just slightly over the next two years - to one investigation per 9,612 soldiers.

A third of the cases involved nonlethal devices, the Army said.

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