Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Pink Panther gang leader released by mistake

(IDEX Online News) – A member of the Pink Panther organized crime network, which especially targeted jewelry stores, has been mistakenly released from an Austrian prison three years early.

The Serbian national was due to be released in fall 2017 after serving a six-year sentence for his role in an armed robbery of a jewelry shop in Eisenstadt in November 2005, but a computer error meant he was released by Austrian authorities in June.

Serbian Borko Ilincic, 33, is said to be a leader of the Pink Panther Gang
The international network of jewel thieves were given their nickname by Interpol in 1993 after one team of Panthers mimicked a theft from an Inspector Clouseau film. The group is thought to be made up of mostly Serbians and Montenegrins, which is why some believe that the organization was formed by Serbian militants during the Yugoslav Wars of the 90s.

They are the most successful band of diamond thieves in history.
In Greece, officers at the Property Crimes Unit (YDEZI) have caught three groups of Panthers since 2007.
The most recent arrests were on March 3, when the cops apprehended four Serbian men, who, in the past year, have broken into 30 stores, most of them jewelry shops.

"Initially, the Panthers perform surveillance of the place by pretending to be customers. They then steal cars from the 90s that don’t have electronic anti-theft systems installed, using impromptu passe-partout keys—known as ‘Polish keys’—which, by the by, is their signature move. And finally, using the ram-raiding method, they break into the shops."

Rifat Hadziahmetovic, 42.

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