Three members of a Parisian gang have been arrested on suspicion of robbing almost €600,000 worth of jewelry from the wife of Mongolia’s Olympic Committee president in the French capital last month.
The vehicle transporting Battushig Batbold and his wife, Tselmuun Nyamtaishir, was tailed from the Charles de Gaulle airport by three suspects on a motorbike near the Stade de France on Oct. 11, according to the public prosecutor’s office.
Agence France-Presse reported how the gang seized the opportunity to strike when the pair’s vehicle slowed in traffic in the Landy Tunnel near the stadium, smashing the rear window and snatching a bag of valuables from the back seat.
Batbold, who is also a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), told police that the bag contained jewelry worth an estimated €570,000.
Police are seeking to link the crime to a similar robbery targeting a group of Saudi nationals the previous week during which valuables worth an estimated €500,000 were stolen.
They revealed that three male suspects, aged 22 to 25, were arrested last week in Seine-Saint-Denis, but only recently made this public. No further details about the identity of the suspects have been released.
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Police have so far failed to retrieve the stolen goods and the trio remain in pre-trial detention in northern Paris ahead of a court hearing scheduled for Nov. 30.
Nyamtaishir revealed in a Facebook post that she had been “traumatized” by the incident and urged her followers to “be careful” when traveling.
The Mongolian businessman had been in the French capital to attend meetings regarding its hosting of the Summer Olympics next year. A main item on the agenda was the issue of security amid a rising crime rate in the city.
The French interior ministry revealed back in February that France recorded significantly higher levels of crime in almost all categories last year with burglaries, thefts, and sexual offenses all rising by double figures.
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“Almost all the indicators of recorded delinquency were up in 2022 compared to the previous year,” the ministry noted.
Theft from vehicles skyrocketed by 30.3 percent, while robberies and sexual offenses increased by 13.7 percent and 11.4 percent year-over-year.
In October last year, President Macron announced that half of all criminal offenses in the French capital are committed by migrants.
“Yes, when we look at delinquency in Paris, we can see that half of the delinquent acts are committed by foreigners in an irregular situation or awaiting asylum approval,” he told the France 2 television channel.