Pink Panthers- International- 2000's-Present Oct 14, 2015 8:09:39 GMT -5
Post by Scumhunter on Oct 14, 2015 8:09:39 GMT -5
(Pictured: Above: Left: Mladen Lazarevic, Middle: Bojana Mitic (Girlfriend of Lazarevic) Right: Predrag Lovric Photo Credits: amw.com archives)
The Pink Panthers, a pair of now infamous international jewel thieves, were aired on the November 6th, 2010 and the April 21st, 2012 (World's Most Wanted special/Last ever Fox episode) episodes of America's Most Wanted. Below is the archived description of the case:
Pink Panthers Sweep The Globe
The British press nicknamed them, and Interpol has created a special task force to take them down. They’re known as the Pink Panthers, and their specialty is robbing high-end jewelry stores around the world.
After the gang hit a London store in 2003, police raided their hideout. During the raid, police say they found a gem hidden in a jar of face cream. Because this was very similar to a scene from the 1963 film "The Pink Panther", the British press dubbed the gang the Pink Panthers.
The group is believed to include approximately 400 individuals responsible for more than 190 robberies in 27 countries since 1999, with the value of stolen jewelry estimated at more than 230 million euro.
In 2009, approximately 30 cases were confirmed to the Interpol General Secretariat as being related to the Pink Panthers. Since then, Interpol created Project Pink Panthers. The special task force is made up of investigators from several different countries who have expertise in the stealing and fencing of high-end jewelry.
The Pink Panthers went from tabloid press to infamy when several members robbed a jewelry store in the Wafi Mall in Dubai. On April 15, 2007, the robbers crashed two Audis through the mall entrance and drove right up to the store. They then backed one of the cars into the store’s entrance, smashing through door. This allowed three of the masked individuals to enter the store and steal $17 million worth of jewels.
After the robbery, the gang members set the two cars on fire in an attempt to burn any evidence. But investigators were able to find the rental agreement, which was signed by Bojana Mitic. Officials say she was the girlfriend of Milan Ljepoja, a well-known Pink Panther. Police also found 14 DNA profiles in both of the cars and jewelry store. One of the matches came back to Ljepoja, and a second came back to Dusko Poznan.
Investigators knew Ljepoja and Poznan well. On Jan. 31, 2006, four individuals committed an armed robbery in a jewelry store in Vaduz, Liechtenstein, leaving with approximately 620,000 euro of merchandise and cash. However, the robbers were sloppy and left behind fingerprints and DNA profiles.
Investigators were able to link Ljepoja and Poznan to the Vaduz heist and a few months later, Ljepoja was arrested at the French/Swiss border.
Geneva Detective Yan Glassey was brought in to question Ljepoja. Glassey is an expert with international thieves and was hoping to get information from Ljepoja, but he was stoic and would not give up any other gang members.
Ljepoja convicted of the robbery, but on July 19, 2006, he broke his hands in a Liechtenstein prison. When he was taken to an area hospital, his police escorts were ambushed by a group of armed men -- and Ljepoja escaped.
On May 29, 2008, two years after interviewing Ljepoja, Detective Glassey was working on an unrelated case of Russian thieves. Along with French detectives, he was checking the names on a hotel registry just across the Swiss border in Gex, France, when he spotted Ljepoja walking through the hotel lobby. Ljepoja ran from the hotel but was later apprehended in a nearby schoolyard.
In Oct. 15, 2008, Dusko Poznan was hit by a car in Monaco. When a police officer arrived at the hospital to take his statement, he recognized Poznan from posters and images that had been circulated to all police stations. Police say Poznan was in Monaco to stake out another jewelry store. A second man was also arrested.
Now that they have two of their men in custody, investigators are asking for your help in finding the other members of this particular gang of Pink Panthers.
Predrag Lovric is wanted in Vaduz, Liechtenstein, for his alleged role in the Vaduz heist and helping Ljepoja escape from prison.
Mladen Lazarevic has also been linked to the Dubai robbery and to the robbery in Liechtenstein.
Bojana Mitic, Ljepoja’s girlfriend, is wanted for her role in the Dubai robbery.
Before I get to asking for thoughts- thanks to forum member Pakman- we've learned of an interesting but scary update in this case. In 2013, a a bomb was apparently planted under a car in Albania. It’s suspected that Lazarevic planted the bomb along with Mitic, his girlfriend (the car was registered to her). The article appears to be in Croatian, but if you use Google translate, you might be able to somewhat figure out what they're saying:
Anyway, what are everyone's thoughts? I'm not sure as far as whereabouts since they seem to commit crimes all over the place, although it doesn't seem like the remaining Pink Panthers plan on stopping any time soon.
Admin Note #1: Based on archived description, our advice for anyone with any information on any of the three remaining Pink Panthers would be to e-mail Interpol at [email protected]
Admin Note #2: If you have any news-related updates on this case, please contact us here: amwfans.com/thread/1662/website-contact-form
Mladen Lazarevic: Archived AMW Page: web.archive.org/web/20120517045035/http://www.amw.com/fugitives/brief.cfm?id=75264
Bojana Mitic: Archived AMW Page: web.archive.org/web/20101111192749/http://www.amw.com/fugitives/case.cfm?id=75267
Predrag Lovric: Archived AMW Page: web.archive.org/web/20120423112313/http://www.amw.com/fugitives/brief.cfm?id=75262#case