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Outrageous Scrap Metal Thefts

The turmoil in financial markets over the past three years has seen volatility rising and commodity prices hitting new highs. Across the world, investors have sought to get exposure to all sorts of commodities, fleeing paper money for fear of inflation, as central banks loosened monetary policy in desperate attempts to kick-start weak economies.

But it's not just investors who have tried with all their might to get a piece of the action in the world of commodities. The stealing of steel, copper, and lead objects for the purpose of selling them as scrap metal increased during the financial crisis—to such an extent that South Africa's Chamber of Commerce started publishing a Copper Theft Barometer each month.

Some strange objects stolen to be sold as scrap metal include warheads, shopping carts, and a church roof. Click ahead to find out more.

Posted 29 Aug 2011

Hector Retamal | AFP | Getty Images