Cheddar heist costs German police officer his badge

BERLIN (Reuters) - A German police officer who was fired for stealing cheddar cheese from an overturned truck while attending a traffic accident has lost his appeal against dismissal, a court ruled.

In his defence, he denied nibbling on any of the cheddar.

The police officer, who had been called to secure the scene, instead drove up to the side of the truck and ordered a rescue worker to hand him nine 20-kilogramme (44-pound) packages of cheese, which were worth around 554 euros ($595) in total.

He took some of the parcels to his office, but the final whereabouts of the other parcels could not be conclusively clarified, the court in Koblenz said on Tuesday.

It was assumed that the police officer had kept "four parcels for himself or his friends and relatives", it added.

The police officer, who said he did not even like cheddar, had appealed against his dismissal, saying the cheese had been worth practically nothing as it had not been kept chilled and would have gone to waste.

($1 = 0.9317 euros)

(Reporting by Rachel More; Writing by Sarah Marsh; Editing by Alexander Smith)