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Thieves Pull Off $50 Million Diamond Heist (Yes, $50 Million)

jewel thief

It’s the kind of thing that, if you saw it in a movie, you’d call it implausible: international jewel thieves stole $50 million in diamonds at the airport.

A group of eight very ambitious, very well prepared thieves dressed up as police officers and drove two black cars out onto the tarmac at the international airport in Brussels, Belgium. There, wielding submachine guns (though never firing them), the crooks managed to find a gap in the otherwise very heavy security, as the diamonds were being loaded onto a Switzerland-bound flight. In just five minutes, they took the gems—all while the passengers on the plane waited for takeoff.

“This was not a random robbery,” said a spokesperson for the Brussels’ prosecutor’s office, a statement which is already in the running for the 2013 Statement of the Obvious awards. “It was well-prepared—these were professionals.”

Police are investigating the matter, trying to determine exactly how the heist was pulled off. Apparently the thieves cut a hole in the security fence at the airport, through which they drove their vehicles. Police say they found a burned-out remains of a car they believe was used in the theft. No suspects’ names have been released.

[New York Times]

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