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$2M worth of diamonds stolen in NoHo heist

August 19, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
A search is under way for a gang of thieves who staged a brazen jewelry heist in North Hollywood, swiping a backpack full of diamonds.

The incident happened at about 10 p.m. Thursday at the intersection of Bel Air Road and Burbank Boulevard. The victim told investigators that shortly after he left a friend's home, a car hit him from behind, and then another vehicle pulled in front to prevent him from fleeing.

At that point, he said five or six suspects wearing black masks and black clothes exited their vehicles, approached his car, smashed the passenger-side window and stole a backpack reportedly containing diamonds valued at about $2 million.

The victim said he tried to hold on to that backpack, but one of the suspects punched him in the face, forcing him to let go.

Authorities said the man was likely targeted and intentionally followed by the suspects.

It was unknown if the diamonds were insured.

Police said one of the vehicles involved in the heist was either a gray or gold SUV. Another vehicle possibly involved in the incident may have also been in a later hit-and-run crash with a fire hydrant. Authorities impounded that car to search for fingerprints and other clues that may tie the vehicle to the jewelry heist.

If you have any information regarding this incident, you're urged to contact LAPD at (877) LAPD-24-7 or (877) 527-3247.


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