The Rydges Hotel in Auckland was the site of a NZ$600,000 jewellery heist
Thieves arrested in $700,000 jewellery heist
By Sonia Nair
International jewellery thieves who targeted New Zealand with two major robberies amounting to over NZ$700,000 ($531,948) have been apprehended.
Three women and two men were arrested and charged with the theft of over NZ$700,000 ($531,948) worth of jewellery in two separate Auckland robberies in the space of three weeks.
Police apprehended two men and a woman in Wellington on May 26 after arresting two women a week earlier. The women were about to board a Los Angeles flight at the Auckland International Airport on May 19.
Three of those arrested are Colombians travelling on American passports while the other two suspects arrived in New Zealand on Mexican passports.
All five were set to appear in the Auckland District Court last Friday.
Police launched an investigation after it was reported that up to seven offenders robbed a Sydney-based jewellery supplier in Parnell on May 2. The heist netted the thieves NZ$100,000 ($75,993) worth of goods.
A second robbery took place on May 17 outside the Rydges Hotel in Auckland when five offenders robbed two international jewellers of more than NZ$600,000 ($455,956) of jewellery.
Police are still on the lookout for two men – said to be travelling on Mexican passports – who were last seen in Christchurch on May 27.
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