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Man jailed over theft of museum watches

A court has jailed a man for his part in the robbery of 105 exclusive watches from a museum in La Chaux-de-Fonds.

The Serb national was sentenced to four years in prison on Tuesday by a Neuchâtel court for the robbery at the Girard-Perregaux museum in July 2007.

He was found guilty of aggravated burglary. One of the museum employees was attacked during the robbery.

The accused had told the court his role in the theft was to keep watch outside the museum and argued he did not know what had been stolen. But the court found he had taken an active part.

A second man is at large after escaping from the prison in La Chaux-de-Fonds. Police are still searching for a third person.

Several million francs worth of watches were stolen, and almost all were recovered by French police in a bag beneath an oak tree about 55km from the northwestern Swiss border town.

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