When I think of a perfect crime, there are many factors to take into consideration. Ideally, no one would get hurt. Another priority would be to steal from people who wouldn’t need it. I mean, these 1%’ers really don’t need the wealth they possess. I would also want to get in and get out as quickly as possible. Of course, the final factor would be to get away with the crime. A robbery worth an estimated 300 million dollars in the heart of London’s diamond quarter was expertly executed over Easter weekend and the police have yet to come up with any viable leads. Don’t get me wrong, the robbers are not yet in the clear, but the more time that passes, the less likely it is that they are actually going to be caught. Former jewel thieves and retired career criminals have chimed in with their expert opinions on the heist and the shortcomings of the police. I have no doubt in my mind that this elaborate heist will someday grace the silver screen, but until then, you’ll have to be pacified with speculation and the limited details recovered by law enforcement.
A few years ago, these criminals amazingly took 3 full days going in and out of the vault, virtually undetected. The closed circuit video cameras caught glimpses of the covered and disguised robbers, indicating that they had done their due diligence in researching their target. Somehow, they triggered the bank alarm, but the police computer reported it as a low-level alarm that required no response and was simply shut off. This basically gave the robbers free rein on the bank vault’s safety deposit boxes over the next three days. Out of 999 boxes in the bank vault, only 72 were accessed. This is a further indication that the robbers really knew what they were doing and possibly had some inside intel.
The Route: This band of thieves used the side entrance to gain access to the bank. Once inside, they made their way to the elevator and they disabled the lift. They now climbed down the shaft where they forced open the security shutter door to gain access to the basement. After prying open another door that lead them to the bank vault, they had to drill their way through a 2 foot concrete wall to gain access to the safety deposit boxes.
The Hole In The Concrete Next To The Vault Door: Behind this intimidating vault door lies 999 safety deposit boxes containing millions of dollars worth of jewels and gold at the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Limited in London, England.
View Of The Vault Through The Hole: The police were about to walk into a chaotic scene of damaged and discarded safety deposit boxes and miscellaneous tools used in the break in.
Aftermath Of The Amazing Bank Heist: With a mess like this, it must have been difficult to find a starting point in the search for evidence.
Damaged Entrance To The Vault: Some heavy-duty equipment had to be used to get past all of the security measures in place.
Discarded Safety Deposit Boxes: For those without property in the vault, this may not look like much. But for those with property that was supposed to be secured in this vault, they must have been stricken with an overwhelming sense of fear and tragic monumental loss.
Security Shutter Bent Open For Basement Access: Intended to prevent access from the elevator to the basement, this door proved to be no match for the skilled thieves in the Easter weekend heist.
Corridor Leading To The ‘Secure’ Vault: The corridor to the vault was littered with tools needed for the elaborate robbery.
Closed Circuit TV Surveillance Of One Of The Thieves: The police are going over thousands of hours of closed circuit TV surveillance to try to identify the robbers casing the bank.
Construction Worker Disguise: The robbers cleverly utilized disguises such as gas and construction workers, as to not look out-of-place as they entered and exited the bank over the three-day period.
Thief Carrying A Bag Of Loot: One of the thieves makes his exit with a bag full of gold and jewels. What? Did you expect a burlap sack with a giant cash symbol painted on the side?
Thief With His Head Down To Avoid Identification By The Camera: This sends a clear message that the robbers knew the precise placement of the cameras and which areas they needed to avoid.
Metro Police Criticized For Failing To Respond To The Alarm: Detective Superintendent Craig Turner, head of the Flying Squad, said: “The hours of forensic work and inquiries have been vital in order to ensure we are able to exploit all investigative opportunities to their fullest extent and assist us in identifying those individuals responsible. We appreciate that this situation has been frustrating for those affected by this crime and thank those individuals for their ongoing patience and support.”
Policeman Emerges From The Hatton Garden Safety Deposit Bank In London, England: Police are still struggling to find the owners of the 72 safety deposit boxes. With the value of the jewels stored, most box lease holders prefer a certain level of anonymity to avoid identification and potential attacks at their residence.
Forensic Officer Enters To Collect Evidence: While no arrests have been made, the methodical forensic examination has reportedly resulted in approximately 400 pieces of evidence. The police have high hopes that this evidence will eventually result in the capture and conviction of these criminals.
H/T The Independent, UKNews & The Guardian
While the police have high hopes, leading experts are not so sure. It is believed that the robbers are probably from Eastern European origin and have already separated and smuggled the jewels out of England to be sold in Europe. The robbers probably had buyers lined up before the heist and have already offloaded and traded the jewels for drugs. The narcotics industry provides a pension plan for villains to live comfortably on for the rest of their lives, rather than sitting on the spoils of their labor and risk the potential of being caught with the stolen goods.
I am definitely going to keep a watchful eye on the media to see if these guys actually get away with the heist. I am also looking forward to someday seeing the Hollywood adaptation of this 300 million dollar heist hitting the silver screen. Until then, my imagination is going to be running wild with the possibilities of the lifestyle these audacious criminals will be leading. While the money would be nice, I don’t know if I could live continually looking over my shoulder wondering if the police had finally caught a break. This fascination and excitement is exactly why dangerous and daring acts like these are immortalized in the films that captivate us.