Diamonds worth nearly Rs 6.6 crore on display at an international exhibition here were stolen and three Mexican nationals including a woman and a Venezuelan were held at the Dubai airport on Tuesday for their suspected involvement in the daring heist.
Cracking the theft case with the help of Interpol in less than 24 hours, Mumbai police said the UAE authority concerned has communicated to them that the diamonds stolen yesterday have been recovered.
A Non—Bailable Warrant (NBW) was issued against the four foreigners by a local court and the accused would be shown under arrest after they are brought to the city, Joint Police Commissioner (Crime) Himanshu Roy said.
The accused identified as Guerrero Lugo Elvia Grissel (24), Campos Molan Elias (39), Gonzalez Madlonado Mauricio (24), who hail from Mexico, and Gutierez Orlando of Venezuela were detained in the wee hours today at the Dubai airport as a look out notice was issued by the Interpol following the theft case registered at Goregaon (East) Police Station here, he added. Grissel is a woman.
According to police, the theft of the diamonds belonging to Israeli company Dalumi Group occurred last evening at the India International Jewellery Show (IIJS) at NSE ground in suburban Goregaon despite tight security and surveillance. The group had put up a stall at the five—day exhibition that ended yesterday.
“We were informed by UAE authority that the diamonds stolen from the show were recovered. We are awaiting for the formalities to be completed so that we can send our team there,” Roy said.
According to police, though foreigners were allowed to visit the show even if they were not associated with gems and jewellery business, the four foreigners gained entry claiming they were involved in the same business.
“At around 4.30pm, while the three men engaged in a talk over the diamonds with an employee of Dalumi group which had a stall there, Grissel had picked up a box with the 887.24 carat diamonds and hid it in her bag,” Roy said.
Initially, Dalumi’s salesman thought it might have been misplaced. As they could not find the diamonds, they lodged an FIR with Goregaon (East) Police Station, Roy added.
“After studying the blurred CCTV footages, the movements of the four of about 1,500 visitors at the show yesterday were found to be suspicious. Later it was found that the woman had stolen the precious stones,” he said.
As organisers had photo identities and other details of the accused, the Imigration officials at the Mumbai airport were alerted but by that time the accused had flown to Dubai in an Emirates flight at 10.30pm, the Crime Branch chief said.
“They were to fly to Hamburg in Germany from Dubai,” Roy said adding that, “We are also probing if the four had a local help here. Going by the way they had carried out the heist, it seems that they would have had conducted a reccee and crime was also committed in the last day of the show.”
Their probe would also focus on if they were part of a larger gang that commits such crimes. “We are also awaiting details such as if they had any criminal background.”
Asked about the details as to when the accused had arrived to Mumbai and where they stayed here, Roy said these details would be available after the interrogation of the accused.