Tracking Stolen Diamonds in the Aftermath of Brussels Heist

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Learn how to know if a diamond is stolen.

50 million dollars worth of diamonds were stolen by armed thieves in Brussels, Belgium.

Eight thieves disguised as policemen and armed with automatic weapons took the haul of diamonds weighing 22 pounds that was being loaded into an airplane about to be cleared for takeoff at Brussels Airport.

Stolen diamonds are often hard to recover once they have been lost because of the nature of the diamond trade industry.

Some diamonds are a little easier to track down as certain paperwork is required for export to verify their authenticity and ensure they were not used to fund acts of violence or crime. However, not all countries provide these certificates.

There is also a way of marking the diamonds with laser inscriptions that are invisible to the human eye, but even these distinctive markings can be taken off the diamonds.

Ian Smillie, author of Blood on the Stone: Greed, Corruption and War said of the heist: “These people were not amateurs, they won't be thinking about how they get rid of these diamonds now, they will have probably got the route planned in advance.”

There have been many diamond heists in Europe over the years including in 2007, when a man stole 21 million Euros worth of diamonds from a bank in Antwerp.

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