Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 29th 2013 Contents A29
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PARIS---A staggering 40 million euro (US$53 mil-
lion) worth of diamonds and other jewels were
stolen yesterday from the Carlton Intercontinental
Hotel in Cannes, in one of Europe s biggest jewelry
heists recent years, police said.
The hotel in the sweltering French Riviera was
hosting a temporary jewelry exhibit over the summer
from the prestigious Leviev diamond house, which
is owned by Israeli billionaire Lev Leviev.
A police spokesman said the theft took place around
noon, but he could not confirm local media reports
that the robber was a single gunman who stuffed a
suitcase with the gems before making a swift exit.
The spokesman spoke on condition of anonymity
because he was not authorised to discuss the matter
on the record.
Several police officers were placed in front of the
Carlton exhibition room to prevent journalists and
photographers gathered at the scene from entering.
The luxury Carlton hotel is situated on the exclusive
Promenade de la Croisette that stretches a mile and
a half along the French Riviera, and is thronged by
the rich and famous throughout the year. The hotel s
position provides not only a beautiful view of the
sea, but an easy getaway for potential jewel thieves
along the long stretch of road.
The valuable gems were supposed to be on public
display until the end of August. It was not immediately
clear how many pieces were stolen.
Hotel officials would not comment, and attempts
to reach Leviev or his company were not immediately
Several brazen jewelry thefts have taken place this
year, including one in Belgium on February 18 that
involved some US$50 million worth of diamonds.
Authorities have since detained dozens of people
and recovered much of the stolen treasure in that
In May, Cannes was struck by two highly publicised
jewelry heists during the Cannes Film Festival.
Jewel thieves have been getting attention in Europe
in more ways than one.
On Thursday, a member of the notorious "Pink
Panther" jewel thief gang escaped from a Swiss prison
after accomplices rammed a gate and overpowered
guards with bursts from their AK-47s, police said.
Milan Poparic fled with fellow inmate Adrian
Albrecht from the Orbe prison in the western state
Police say the Pink Panthers network s members
are prime suspects in a series of daring thefts. Accord-
ing to Interpol, the group has targeted luxury watch
and jewelry stores in Europe, the Middle East, Asia
and the United States, netting more than €330 million
(£285m) since 1999.
Poparic is the third Pink Panthers member to
escape from a Swiss prison in as many months. (AP)
MADRID---Police say a 16-year-old
boy has been gored to death at a run-
ning-of-the-bulls festival celebrating
the patron saint of a Spanish town.
The youth was gored in the back while
celebrating Saturday s Apostle James
feast at Isso, 322 kilometres southeast
A police spokesman said he died hours
later after two operations failed to repair
massive liver injuries.
A 60-year-old man was also injured
when he was gored in a leg.
Fiestas including bulls are common
in Spain, and critics and aficionados alike
often agree that security is lax at many
small town bull runs.
That means almost anyone can par-
ticipate, even if they re drunk or unfit.
The police spokesman spoke yesterday
on condition of anonymity because he
is not allowed to be cited by name.
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA---The
driver of a Spanish train that derailed
at high speed was questioned by a
judge yesterday, as officials tried to
determine if he was responsible for
the accident, which killed 79 people.
Francisco Jose Garzon Amo, 52, has
been held by police on suspicion of
negligent homicide. He has not been
formally charged by a magistrate or
made any official statements.
However, minutes after the crash
Garzon said that he had been going
fast and couldn t brake, a local resident
who rushed to the scene of the accident
said in an interview broadcast yesterday.
(See page A31)
The resident, Evaristo Iglesias, said
he and another person accompanied
the blood-soaked Garzon to flat ground
where other injured people were being
laid out, waiting for emergency services
The train carrying 218 passenger in
eight cars hurtled far over the 80-kph
speed limit into a high-risk curve on
Wednesday, tumbling off the tracks
and slamming into a concrete wall,
with some of the cars catching fire.
The Spanish rail agency has said the
brakes should have been applied four
kilometres before the train hit the curve.
Yesterday, Garzon was moved from
the police station in the northwestern
Spanish town of Santiago de Com-
postela, near where the accident
occurred, to its courthouse just as the
deadline of his 72 hours of detention
was to expire.
Luis Alaez, the investigative judge,
questioned the driver in private. The
judge also was to have access to the
information contained in the train s
"black box," which is similar to those
found on aircraft, officials said.
Investigators must determine if Gar-
zon failed to apply the brakes or
whether it was a technical failure.
Previously Garzon had exercised his
right to remain silent when police tried
to interview him, officials said. Spain s
state-run train company has described
him as an experienced driver who knew
the route well.
Yesterday, the death toll from the
train derailment rose to 79 after an
injured passenger died in a hospital, a
spokeswoman from the regional gov-
ernment of Galicia told the Associated
Press. Spanish national broadcaster
RTVE said the person was an American
woman but didn t provide her name.
Officials said 70 people injured in the
train accident remained hospitalized
on yesterday, 22 in critical condition.
Meanwhile, authorities said forensic
experts have identified the last three
bodies among the 79 dead. (AP)
Venezuela s chief
prosecutor said she
has asked a court to
freeze the assets of the
editor of one of the
country s two major
El Nacional editor
Miguel Henrique Otero
called the move an
attack on freedom of
expression in state-
ments published yes-
Luisa Ortega Diaz said
the case stems from an
former Caracas Mayor
The mayor had sued
Otero, alleging he owes
him $3.5 million.
Ortega said she
doesn t know where
the ex-mayor got the
money from or what
the loan was for, but
she said her office
would investigate pos-
sible criminal activity,
according to a state-
ment posted on her
agency s Web site.
If granted, the action
would freeze Otero s
bank accounts and
block him from selling
or disposing of his
Otero said govern-
ment officials have
systematically tried to
dominate the news
media by closing some
outlets, and pushing
others to self-censor-
ship with criminal
Venezuela s last
TV station, Globovi-
sion, was recently
bought by business-
men friendly with the
Teen gored to death during bull run
€40m in jewels
Judge probes driver on Spain train crash
Historic heist in Paris
Police stand guard outside the Carlton hotel in Cannes, France, yesterday, hours after it was hit by bandits. A
staggering 40 million euro worth of jewels and diamonds were stolen. AP PHOTO
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