PARIS — French police arrested 32 suspects Monday evening in connection with last year’s multimillion-dollar heist at the Harry Winston jewelry store in Paris.
This story first appeared in the June 24, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The robbery took place in December, when four thieves —three of whom were dressed in wigs and dresses — raided the Harry Winston store on Avenue Montaigne off the Champs-Elysées, near the presidential palace. In one of France’s largest jewelry thefts, they ran away with gems worth 85 million euros, or $107 million.
A police spokesman said Tuesday that some of the people arrested Monday had since been released, but he declined to provide the precise number of arrests, since the investigation is continuing.
Investigators were tipped off that a number of foreigners had arrived in Paris to purchase jewelry from the December robbery.
However, they have ruled out the involvement of the Pink Panthers, a network of thieves operating out of the Balkans who have been involved in some other high-profile jewelry thefts in Europe.
Harry Winston executives weren’t available for comment.
French police are still hunting for a lone robber who pulled off a swift daylight heist last month, stealing 6.5 million euros, or $9.2 million, worth of jewels from the Chopard jewelry shop on Place Vendôme.