At least 15 suspects were arrested in an “extensive dragnet” in the Kim Kardashian jewelry robbery, Europe1 reported.
The UK Mirror reported that police had confirmed the report but gave the number arrested as 16. Agence France Presse also used the higher number, per a police source.
The French news site Europe 1 first broke the news, reporting that the arrests occurred January 9, three months after the American celebrity was tied up in her posh apartment in Paris.
As the situation is unfolding, details are somewhat scant. The names of the suspects have not yet been released, for example. Nor have mugshots. Europe 1 is one of the leading broadcasters in France.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Arrests Occurred in the Paris Region
“These arrests took place simultaneously at 6 o’clock in several parts of the Paris region. They were conducted by the police officers of the Paris Police Station’s Brigade for the Suppression of Banditry (BRB), responsible for the investigation conducted by two examining magistrates,” Europe 1 reported.
In France, police custody can last 96 hours, so more details are expected to be known soon (this article will be updated as they come in). A short time after the first French report, British media started to pick up the story of the mass arrest. BBC also reported arrests were made but provided no further details. The Sun reported that the Paris prosecutor was not immediately available for comment.
2. The Robbers Left Behind Clues for Police to Trace
According to Europe 1, the robbers left DNA at the scene of the crime.
One of the robbers, who fled on bicycle, also dropped a stolen pendant on the street, the station reported.
The robbers were wearing police uniforms, and the theft was the “largest jewelry robbery of an individual in France for more than 20 years,” AFP reported.
Kardashian broke out of the ties and screamed for help from a balcony, the Mirror reported.
3. Kardashian Was Tied Up & Locked in a Bathroom in the Terrifying Heist
When the robbers entered the Paris apartment where Kardashian was staying, they encountered the star, and tied her up, locking her in a bathroom.
She was physically unhurt but badly shaken by many accounts. The police had said previously that they believed the thieves were a “professional team” and organized. There was speculation that an infamous robbery crew known as the Pink Panther gang was behind the heist, but it’s not clear whether the arrests have anything to do with that.
The Pink Panther gang is a crime syndicate known for jewelry heists that has roots in Serbia and Montenegro.
A mysterious and secretive organization of jewelry thieves who have stolen about half a billion dollars over roughly 500 robberies, the Pink Panthers were behind are the subject of a new documentary.Click here to read more
4. The Robbery Left the Reality Star Badly Shaken
In the first weeks after the robbery, Kardashian adopted a much lower profile, not posting as much information on social media and not being seen in public for some time.
Kardashian had been in Paris for fashion week and had been very public about her wealth in the months leading up to the jewelry robbery.
She has gradually been seen back in public. Only recently has Kardashian spoken publicly about the heist, saying on her family’s reality TV show, “They’re going to shoot me in the back.There’s no way out. It makes me so upset to think about it.”
The robbery occurred in October; in addition to backing out of the spotlight more, Kim has weathered her husband Kanye West’s controversies, including his hospitalization for exhaustion, CNN reported.
5. The Thieves Made Off With Millions of Dollars in Gems
This was no small caper; it netted the jewelry thieves $10 million and raised serious questions about Kardashian’s security.
Five people – three on bicycles and two on foot – were captured on a surveillance video approaching the apartment, reported USA Today.