A US woman convicted of involvement in a jewellery robbery has been placed under house arrest.
Home detention for jewellery smuggler
By Dean Millard
An American jeweller convicted of attempting to smuggle stolen jewellery
out of New Zealand has been sentenced to serve 10 months of home
The 45-year-old woman, whose name has been suppressed by the Court, was sentenced in Waitakere District Court last week after pleading guilty to a charge of receiving stolen goods after attempting to smuggle around $600,000 (NZ$800,000) worth of jewellery from New Zealand to the United States.
The woman was contacted by jewellery thief Cesar Romero last year and travelled to New Zealand with her daughter in May, 2011, on American passports.
On May 2, Sydney-based jeweller John Wertheim was robbed of $85,000 worth of jewellery in Parnell when two robbers smashed his car windows while he was sitting in the vehicle.
Two weeks later Hong Kong based jewellery dealers Chin Fung Ng and Aska Lo were robbed of around $500,000 of jewellery when they were attacked while parking their car at a hotel in Auckland.
On May 17 the woman and her daughter met with Romero and were given a backpack containing the jewellery. They attempted to leave the country with the jewellery hidden in their luggage two days later, but were stopped by customs staff at Auckland Airport.
After initially denying knowing that the jewellery was stolen, the woman later pleaded guilty to receiving stolen goods, while the charges of receiving stolen goods and participating in a criminal group against the woman’s daughter were dropped when the Crown offered no evidence against her.
A selection of jewellery attempted to be smuggled out.
The 45-year-old woman will serve her home detention in a house in Mission Bay. While a bid for her name to be suppressed was declined by the judge, an appeal by her lawyer means at this stage it cannot be released.
Jeweller reported in January this year that the Colombian jewellery thieves involved in the thefts which supplied the 45-year-old woman, Romero, Javier Espinosa Agreda, Jose Roberto Jimenez-Perez, Juan Carlos Leal-Casillas and Maria Teresa Martinez all pleaded guilty to a range of aggravated robbery charges and were sentenced to between two and half and three and a half years in prison
Jeweller confesses to receiving stolen jewellery
Posted August 14, 2012