The 20 Most Secretly Brilliant Stupid Criminals

#16. The Hypno-Robber

As we pointed out yesterday, it's possible for criminals to fail so hard, they end up accidentally winning. We'll be updating every day this week with four new examples of the most secretly brilliant crimes ever seen on Cracked, as well as a few new ones.

Vladimir Kozak's media-born nickname, "Hypno-Robber," was ripped right out of a really crappy issue of Spider-Man from the early '70s, and that's probably giving his skills as a criminal mastermind too much credit. He was a bank robber in Moldova, which was his first problem. If you are unfamiliar with Moldova, that's probably because its only claim to fame is being the poorest country in Europe with a good chunk of its citizens making about $2 per day.

Despite the country being the geographical equivalent of a wino, Kozak had either the balls or desperation to walk into six separate banks and attempt to rob them using eye contact, and a suave relaxing voice. Yes, in what had the potential to be modern history's greatest feat of unintentional comedy, he tried to hypnotize them Dr. Mindbender style, possibly with the use of a magic hypno-coin or glasses he purchased from a comic book.

Secretly Brilliant:

Using this technique, he managed to steal somewhere in the neighborhood of $40,000, or as it's known in Moldova, so rich you're automatically president. Since his crime spree began, the fierce power of the Moldovan police department has cracked down and warned all bank tellers to avoid eye contact with Hypno should he make an appearance. They were also advised to call security and not attempt to detain him themselves, because of course he may unleash his hypnosis when threatened.

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"Don't listen to a word out of that sweet silky mouth, men!"

None of their tips may work if, instead of hypnosis, Kozak's plan involves telling the $2-a-day bank tellers that he'll split the money with them if they just hand it over, and to feed the authorities the bullshit hypnosis story so they won't get nailed as accomplices.

Of course there's no evidence to support that, but the alternative is to believe that this man has the kind of mind-control powers that would let him take over the world if he felt like it. Or at least have sex with lots and lots of women.

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