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The latest armed attack on IMP Jewellery marks the second time in three months that the business has been targeted
The latest armed attack on IMP Jewellery marks the second time in three months that the business has been targeted

Melbourne jewellery stores under attack

Jewellery stores across Melbourne have been prime targets of armed robberies, with a spate of brazen heists taking place in the past month.

The most recent robbery occurred at IMP Jewellery in Toorak just before 1pm on Saturday 14 January.

According to Victoria Police, four males of African appearance entered the store and stole an “unknown” amount of jewellery.

IMP Jewellery manager Stevan Morrow told Jeweller it was too early to determine the value of damage and jewellery stolen; however, he said most of the store’s fit-out was destroyed during the incident.

Stevan Morrow, IMP Jewellery manager
Stevan Morrow, IMP Jewellery manager

CCTV footage showed the thieves smashing many of the business’ glass display cabinets and filling bags with jewellery before fleeing the store in a getaway car.

It was believed at least one of the men had a gun, which was used to hit Morrow on the head. Morrow was being treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Read More: Arrests made

The robbery marked the second time in less than three months that IMP Jewellery had been targeted.

As previously reported by Jeweller, three armed thieves robbed the store on 25 October 2016. Jewellery valued at about $200,000 was stolen at the time and the business received considerable media attention after Morrow confronted the robbers and forced them out of the store.

IMP Jewellery was currently closed, with Morrow stating he was unsure when operations would re-commence.

Heists continue

The incident comes on the heels of an armed robbery at Holloway Diamonds in Canterbury on Thursday 12 January.

The theft took place at about 1:30pm and involved three masked thieves allegedly carrying machetes and sledgehammers as they smashed display cabinets and filled a bag with jewellery.

Holloway Diamonds owner Garry Holloway said although he was unsure of the value of damage and jewellery stolen at the time of publication, it appeared that, interestingly, high-valued diamond pieces were left untouched in favour of jewellery set with gemstones such as aquamarine.

Holloway added that four staff members were working at the time but no one was physically injured.

Two teenagers were arrested and charged in relation to the robbery.

Garry Holloway, Holloway Diamonds managing director
Garry Holloway, Holloway Diamonds managing director

An 18-year-old man was charged with six counts of armed robbery and other offences while a 17-year-old male was charged with one count of armed robbery and was remanded in custody to appear at a children’s court. 

Three additional men were interviewed by police and released pending further enquiries.

Holloway said he hoped the arrests would help put a stop to the spate of jewellery store thefts in Melbourne and prevent other people from believing that stealing from jewellers was an easy way to make money.

Adding to the string of heists was the robbery at H&H Jewellery in Elsternwick on Wednesday 4 January.

According to reports, the theft took place at about 1:40pm and involved three masked robbers wielding a handgun and machete. Victoria Police stated the thieves threatened staff and stole jewellery before leaving in a car.

A Victoria Police spokesperson told Jeweller that investigations for these incidents were ongoing and a comment on potential links between the thefts could not be made.

During a media conference held on Monday 16 January, Victoria Police assistant commissioner Rick Nugent stated that a dedicated taskforce was working on the matter.

Anyone with information regarding the robberies were urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Industry seminar

In light of the recent jewellery store attacks, Victoria Police will conduct an industry seminar in Melbourne at 6pm on 24 January.

The event, held in conjunction with the Jewellers Association of Australia, the Gemmological Association of Australia and the Gold and Silversmiths Guild of Australia, aims to educate jewellers on how to protect themselves, staff and businesses against theft.

Topics covered include a report on the current crime situation, advice on how to review security procedures, best practice in dangerous situations and an overview of new security technology.

The seminar will be held at the Victoria Police Complex and bookings are essential. For more information and booking details, click here.

 

Melbourne robberies 

IMP Jewellery, Toorak. Image courtesy: ABC News
IMP Jewellery, Toorak. Image courtesy: ABC News

Holloway Diamonds, Canterbury. Images courtesy: <em>The Courier Mail</em> and Network 10
Holloway Diamonds, Canterbury. Images courtesy: The Courier Mail and Network 10

CCTV footage of H&H Jewellery robbery
CCTV footage of H&H Jewellery robbery

 

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Thursday, 21 June, 2018 04:33am
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