IN THE BAG: French police have arrested 16 people in connection with the armed robbery of Kim Kardashian in Paris in October, French media reported on Monday.
Police carried out a series of arrests in Paris and its suburbs early Monday morning, newspapers including Le Monde and Le Figaro reported. DNA left at the scene of the crime was used to track down at least one of the suspects, who was already known to police for previous crimes, the reports said.
A spokesman for Paris police referred inquiries to the Paris prosecutor’s office. Officials there were not immediately available to comment. According to French law, authorities now have up to 96 hours to charge the suspects or let them go.
At least two men dressed as police officers held up Kardashian West at gunpoint in the luxury apartment where she was staying during Paris Fashion Week last October. The robbers reportedly forced the night watchman of the discreet guesthouse known as the No Address hotel to let them into the apartment.
The thieves made off with two cell phones and an estimated $10 million of the star’s jewels, including her 20-carat engagement ring, and left her bound and gagged in the bathroom. The robbers reportedly fled the scene on bicycles, dropping a $31,000 platinum cross that was found by a resident on a nearby street.
“She is badly shaken but physically unharmed,” a spokeswoman for Kardashian said at the time.
Kardashian’s robbery risked further damage to Paris’ image following a year when terror attacks, strikes and flooding had dealt repeated blows to tourism in the French capital. The arrests follow three months of investigation, notably by a special police unit known as the Brigade de Répression du Banditisme — or Banditry Repression Brigade.
Kardashian — whose every move is tracked by paparazzi as well as documented by the star herself for her nearly 90 million followers on Instagram — has kept a low profile since the attack. She returned to the social network last week with a series of portraits with her husband, rapper Kanye West, and her two children.
The next season of Kardashian West’s reality TV show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” promises to see the star break her silence about the ordeal. “They’re going to shoot me in the back,” she is heard saying in a recent teaser.