Robbers arrested after store owner tells them to come back later

A group of would-be thieves were prevented from robbing a store in Belgium Saturday after the owner said he didn’t have enough money in the cash register and asked them to come back later.

The owner, who was identified by CNN affiliate RTL as Didier, runs an e-cigarette shop on the outskirts of the Belgian city of Charleroi. He said six armed individuals walked into his store in the middle of the afternoon demanding money.

In an attempt to diffuse the situation, Didier told the group to come back at the end of the day when the till had more cash in it.

“I told them clearly that 3 p.m. is not the best time to hold up a store,” Didier told RTL. He said to the group, “You’ll take 1,000 bucks, but if you come back tonight you might be able to take more.”

Incredulously, the group left, and Didier was able to phone the police. “They weren’t the brightest,” he said, adding that the police didn’t think they would return.

But at 5:30 p.m. the group did return. Didier once again called their bluff and told the group it was still not closing time. “I berated them saying ‘you have to buy a watch.’ I said, ‘it’s 5:30 not 6:30,’ and they left,” he told RTL.

When the group returned for a third time, plain-clothes policemen were waiting to apprehend them.

Five people were arrested, including a minor, according to local media. The sixth alleged offender ran away.