Dhe fears for the fate of the stolen bearded monkey at Leipzig Zoo is over. The animal has been back in its enclosure since Thursday, weakened but otherwise unharmed. The zoo announced that the animal was discovered in the morning in Reudnitz, a district of Leipzig. A team of zookeepers brought a 15-year-old female named Ruma back to the zoo. The monkey was stolen from its cage during a burglary on Easter night.

The jogger called police around 7:15 a.m. Thursday and said he spotted a bearded monkey in a tree, police spokesman Olaf Hoppe said. The zoo crew immediately moved out. Meanwhile, the monkey ran into a nearby apartment building and got caught in the landing net in the stairwell.

“We are relieved that our female bearded monkey is doing well after the initial check-up. No external injuries can be seen, but he seems to be weakened,” explained the director of the zoo, Junhold. He thanked the whistleblower who discovered the monkey in the tree.

“The evidence was very clear”

It is still unclear who was behind the crime and what was its motive. “We are dealing with burglary and theft. The evidence was very clear,” said police spokesperson Hoppe. The police are now expanding their investigation to the district of Reudnitz, where the bearded monkey was discovered.

The animal was probably released near the site, said Johannes Pfleiderer, the zoo's senior curator. Although the monkey could have moved from tree to tree on its own, it is unlikely that it traveled many kilometers through the city. The zoo has implemented measures to provide additional security, especially at night.

On Thursday, Ruma was originally supposed to recover unnoticed by visitors. She should probably return to the outdoor area with her 12-year-old companion on Friday, Janet Pambor, the sub-manager in charge, said.

The police are investigating a suspect of particularly serious theft. It's also a special case for investigators, Hoppe said. The last animal theft at Leipzig Zoo took place 22 years ago. At that time, two young crocodiles went missing. After a while, they reappeared on the grounds of the zoo. Hoppe also appealed to the conscience of the abuser or criminals: “You also have the option of turning yourself in to the police.”

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