Pink Panthers May Be Behind Dutch Diamond Heist

Cue the Henry Mancini music...

Scene from "The Pink Panther Strikes Again"
Life imitates art when it comes to jewel thefts.
FilmPublicityArchive/United Archives via Getty Images

They’ve been called “the world’s best diamond thieves.” They draw their inspiration from a series of cult comedies starring Peter Sellars. And they’re now the chief suspects in a high-profile theft that took place last year at the The European Fine Art Fair. Welcome to the strange world of a mysterious organization that’s been dubbed “the Pink Panthers.”

The first thing that you should know about the Pink Panthers is that they’ve been carrying out heists for a while now. As The Guardian reported in 2010, the gang’s name was bestowed upon them for a heist that echoed a theft in one of the Pink Panther films. By the time The Observer wrote about them in 2013, they’d made off with over $332 million worth of valuables — and that’s only increased in the last decade.

As ARTnews reports, Dutch police now believe that the Pink Panthers were involved with the theft of $25 million worth of diamonds at the 2022 edition of the European Fine Art Fair. Among other factors, the brazenness of the theft suggests the Pink Panthers.

The theft at the art fair included smashing containers to release the diamonds and then using electric scooters to escape. It seems like a scene from a heist movie, and yet it’s all too real.

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It’s a promising lead for the Dutch police. Then again, the Pink Panthers have done a remarkably good job of staying under the radar up until this point. Will this be the case where a breakthrough happens?

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