Bulgarian Burglars Snatch 320 kg of Gold in Schocking Theft

Crime | October 18, 2010, Monday // 19:19| Views: | Comments: 4
Bulgaria: Bulgarian Burglars Snatch 320 kg of Gold in Schocking Theft Pictured: some of the equipment used by the Founders to disguise gold and platinum as silver for exports. Photo by Interior Ministry

Brazen robbers have managed to steal more than 320 kg of gold which the Bulgarian police captured in August 2010 in one of its much advertised special operations.

The scandalous robbery was committed overnight as 320 kg of gold, 20 kg of silver, and 1 kg of platinum were stolen from a storage facility of the Bulgarian Customs Agency located at Terminal 1 of the Sofia International Airport.

"Unfortunately, for some reason, the automatic security system of the facility had been turned off. Our colleagues are on the crime scene and have started to search for the robbers," Bulgaria's Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov stated, as cited by the Bulgarian National Television.

The storage facility of the Customs Agency at Terminal 1 of the Sofia International Airport usually contains confiscated stolen or contraband goods such as liquor, cigarettes, or IT equipment.

The burglars broke into one of the storage halls, searched it, and then made a hole into a wall thus breaking into a second hall where they found the precious metals they were looking for.

According to BNT sources, the security system of the warehouse was turned off at 7 pm Sunday night, and the saves containing the gold, silver, and platinum had been left opened.

The burglars also managed to sprinkle hairs and alcohol on the crime scene in order to cover their traces.

The gold, silver, and platinum that have been stolen were confiscated in August 2010 by the police during a crackdown on an organized crime group dealing with illegal trade of precious metals. The much advertised police operation was codenamed "The Founders."

The Founders were busted as they were about to export a total of 369 kg of gold and platinum declared as silver through the Sofia International Airport.

Subsequently, the police found that much of the precious metals had been stolen.

Bulgaria’s Interior Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov said the theft of the gold and silver will not affect the trial against the Founders as all evidence had already been gathered. It is still unclear whether those who committed the burglary have any connection with the actual five detained “Founders”.

As of late Monday night, the Customs Agency has failed to make any statements on the brazen burglary into its facility, which appears to have been facilitated from the inside, if the initial reports prove correct.

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Tags: Founders, interior ministry, police, Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, special operation, Customs Agency, terminal 1, Sofia Airport, burglary, burglars, theft, robbery, gold, silver, platinum
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» To the forumComments (4)
MJC - 19 Oct 2010 // 21:00:08

One of my many acquisitions that i have acquired since arriving in Bulgaria is a gold smelting plant , I must make it abundantly clear to those poorer members of this forum, this plant is used solely to melt down my vast quantity's of antique gold that i have collected over many many years of world travel, If any one has any gold that does need smelting don't hesitate to ask..I think it may be worth mentioning the going rate per smelt is 60% of the gross..Just thought i would mention it ? MJC

khanken - 19 Oct 2010 // 10:48:18

Good haul you guys. Gold is selling for $1,360 an ounce today, so don't take it to that
metal recycler down the road.

Highlander - 19 Oct 2010 // 02:53:40

Here we go again !
Only the Police and Customs Agency knew where the gold was stored, and the alarm and the surveillance cameras were turned off for hours. The alarm system is connected to the police and the agency- a lot of officers were on duty, but no one noticed that the alarm "mysteriously" was turned off. Inside job? I bet!

How difficult can it be to investigate ? Well, do not expect any results soon and the police has other problems to struggle with due to cuts in public spending. A roadside bribe or harassment of truck drivers does not make big contributions to the officer's private pension fund, but this graft does.
Look at it from the bright side: the stolen gold was never to be returned to its legitimate owners and thieves steal from thieves as usual in Bulgaria. Shocking theft ? Not at all, but business as usual in Bulgaria.

Al - 19 Oct 2010 // 00:54:28

The article says: "According to BNT sources, the security system of the warehouse was turned off at 7 pm Sunday night, and the saves containing the gold, silver, and platinum had been left opened."

Easy now. The value of the stolen gold is only 10 million euro. Not more than most mutri have stored in shoe boxes hidden under baba's outdoor squat toilet.

Anyway. Can I get the address of the shed housing the Bulgarian national gold reserve? I also need to borrow a truck. Or at least a horse wagon.


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