Cellini Salt Cellar Robbery
The Cellini Salt Cellar, part-enamelled gold table sculpture by Benvenuto Cellini, was stolen from the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna in May 2003. Surprising enough, however, the work of art was recovered in Zwettl, Austria buried in the ground not long after. Eventually, Robert Mang, a resident of Vienna, turned himself in.
The Graff Diamonds Robbery
The Graff Diamonds robbery took place on August 6th, 2009, when two men posing as customers entered the premises of Graff Diamonds in New Bond Street, London and stole jewelry worth nearly £40 million (US$65 million). The robbers used the services of a professional make-up artist to alter their hair by using wigs, their skin tones and their features using latex prosthetics. The artist took four hours to apply the disguises, having been told that it was for a music video. Although the robbers were all eventually caught, as of yet none of the stolen jewels have been recovered.
The Brink’s-MAT robbery occurred on November 26th, 1983, when six robbers broke into the Brink’s-MAT warehouse at Heathrow Airport, London. At the time, it was described as “the crime of the century.” The gang gained entry to the warehouse from security guard Anthony Black. The robbers thought they were going to steal £3 million in cash. However, when they arrived, they found three tonnes of gold bullion and stole £26 million worth of gold, diamonds, and cash. Once inside, they poured petrol over staff and threatened them with a lit match if they did not reveal the combination numbers of the vault. Most of the three tonnes of stolen gold has never been recovered, and four of the robbers were never convicted. According to the BBC, some have claimed that anyone wearing gold jewelry bought in the UK after 1983 is probably wearing Brink’s-MAT.
The Securitas Depot Robbery
The Securitas depot robbery was the largest cash robbery in British history. It took place on the evening of February 21st, 2006, from 18:30 GMT until the early hours of February 22nd, 2006. Several men abducted and threatened the family of the manager, tied up fourteen staff members and stole £53,116,760 in bank notes from a Securitas Cash Management depot in Vale Road, Tonbridge, Kent. All the robbers were eventually caught and convicted.
Carlton Hotel Robbery
The Guinness Book of World Records says the world’s biggest jewelry robbery took place in August 1994, when three thieves burst into the most famous Carlton Hotel in Cannes. Firing machine guns, they robbed the Carlton’s jewelry store just as it was being closed. They made off with £30m in jewels. It was later discovered that the rounds they had been firing were in fact blanks.