Sunday, July 28, 2013

Like A Movie: $53 Million In Jewels Stolen From Cannes Hotel Exhibit.

PARIS – A staggering $53 million worth of diamonds and other jewels were stolen Sunday from the Carlton Intercontinental Hotel in Cannes, in one of Europe's biggest jewelry heists recent years, police said.

The hotel in the sweltering French Riviera was hosting a temporary jewelry exhibit over the summer from the prestigious Leviev diamond house, which is owned by Israeli billionaire Lev Leviev.

A police spokesman said the theft took place around noon, but he could not confirm local media reports that the robber was a single gunman who stuffed a suitcase with the gems before making a swift exit. The spokesman spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter on the record.

Several police officers were placed in front of the Carlton exhibition room to prevent journalists and photographers gathered at the scene from entering.

The luxury Carlton hotel is situated on the exclusive Promenade de la Croisette that stretches a mile and a half along the French Riviera, and is thronged by the rich and famous throughout the year. The hotel's position provides not only a beautiful view of the sea, but an easy get away for potential jewel thieves along the long stretch of road.

The valuable gems were supposed to be on public display until the end of August. It was not immediately clear how many pieces were stolen.