While children all over England were searching for brightly colored plastic eggs filled with crumpets and jam (presumably) this Easter weekend, a group of jewel thieves used the three-day banking holiday to pull off a record-breaking heist outside of London that sounds like it came straight out of a Pierce Brosnan movie.
The crime targeted Hatton Garden Safe Deposit company, used by many firms in London’s jewelry quarter to store their wares. Police say the thieves took advantage of the long holiday weekend to abseil down an elevator shaft and penetrate a series of fortified doors to reach a trove of deposit boxes.
Rappelling down an elevator shaft and penetrating fortified doors? This isn’t a Pierce Brosnan movie, it’s Ocean’s Eleven. It’s almost exactly like the plot of Ocean’s Eleven. They even might have had a diminutive Chinese acrobat in the vault to help them get in. The only difference so far is that Clooney and company walked off with $150 million in cash and these thieves made off with… wait, how much did they make off with?
Police haven’t yet determined the full value of the stolen goods. The BBC quotes Roy Ramm, a former leader of the London police department’s elite Flying Squad unit, as saying that he “would not be surprised” if the take was worth as much as 200 million pounds sterling (about $300 million).
Holy Toledo! That’s a lot of millions. And investigators suspect that with a score this big the thieves had buyers — although it’s very fun to picture a single eccentric billionaire purchasing all of the jewels and, like, glueing them to a tuxedo or something — lined up prior to the theft, so recovering the stolen goods could prove difficult.
At least until Rene Russo shows up in a $400 black turtleneck to investigate. Will she catch the suspects red-handed without falling in love first? Find out next summer in the box office smash I started writing the second I saw this story, Easter Heist: It’s A Lot Of Movies.
(She will not.)