Undercover police catch Zurich pizza gang

Officers arrested three teenagers in Zurich after an undercover operation exposed a gang terrorizing pizza delivery men, Zurich police said on Wednesday.

Undercover police catch Zurich pizza gang
Photo: Matt Chan

The operation aimed to catch the culprits of three attacks on pizza delivery men in Zurich’s district three in the past few weeks.

In each instance, the gang ordered a pizza and then used baseball bats and pepper spray to attack the delivery man on arrival at the given address, before stealing his money, mobile phone and pizzas.

On Tuesday night, a police officer stood in for the courier after the pizza restaurant took a late-night order for an address in the Friesenberg area.

Arriving at the specified property at around 11.30pm, the undercover police officer was confronted by several hooded youths.

When other officers intervened, the gang attacked them with baseball bats and pepper spray.   

Three police officers were slightly injured in the incident.

In a statement, police confirmed the arrests at the scene of three teenagers aged 16, 17 and 19.

Several other members of the gang escaped.

Speaking to newspaper 20 Minuten, a local resident said he saw several police cars and around 15 police officers outside the property on Tuesday night.

He described seeing a police officer give chase to a youth trying to flee over a barrier.

“I am shocked to know that such things go on in this neighbourhood,” he said.

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Zurich mandates organic food for hospitals, schools and cafeterias

Hospitals, schools, canteens and a range of other venues in Zurich will need to ensure the majority of their food is organic, after the council passed an initiative.

Zurich mandates organic food for hospitals, schools and cafeterias

The initiative, passed on Wednesday by 71 votes to 41, stipulates that at least 50 percent of the offerings must be organic. 

It applies to retirement and care centres, hospitals, day care centres, schools, canteens and cafeterias. 

QUIZ: Would you pass Zurich’s Swiss citizenship test?

Environment and Health Director Andreas Hauri acknowledged that there may be some problems in converting over to organic food, but said he was “convinced we can still increase the proportion”. 

The city said it will now begin to examine how it can boost the proportion of organic foods to the required levels. 

The city’s nutrition strategy already calls for a greater amount of food from the surrounding region, but had previously been silent on the amount of organic food that should be included. 

While the initiative passed, there was some opposition from the right-wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP). 

The SVP said the change was “far removed from decency and reality”, arguing that it sent the wrong signals to developing countries. 

READ MORE: Will Switzerland be able to feed itself in the future?

The initiative is “an affront to people in poor countries who do not know how to feed themselves” said the SVP’s Johann Widmer. 

The Free Democratic Party (FDP) also opposed the change, saying it was unclear how the new standards would be implemented. 

Martina Zürcher asked how the 50 percent requirement should be measured. 

“In kilograms? In francs?” she said.