Four in UK plead guilty to role in London jewel heist

Older thieves admit part in ransacking safety deposit boxes after drilling through concrete, avoiding more charges.

    The thieves accessed the safety deposit boxes after climbing down an elevator shaft and drilling through concrete [Getty]
    The thieves accessed the safety deposit boxes after climbing down an elevator shaft and drilling through concrete [Getty]

    Four men have pleaded guilty to conspiracy in a major jewel heist in London's Hatton Garden diamond district over the Easter weekend.

    By admitting their guilt on Friday, the men will avoid other charges brought forward by prosecutors. Two of the men were in their seventies, one in his sixties, and the youngest 58.

    The theft had fascinated Britain after it was discovered the thieves had entered a vault area carrying bags and wheeled garbage bins to cart off the loot.

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    Police refrained from attaching a value to the stolen goods, saying only that it was of high value. The thieves ransacked 73 safety deposit boxes after climbing down an elevator shaft and drilling through thick concrete walls.

    At the time of the heist, British media outlets put the value of the goods stolen at about $300m. That figure was later revised down to $15m by many outlets.

    Hatton Garden is home to almost 300 diamond, gold and gem dealers and more than 50 shops.

    Those involved took advantage of the extended Easter holiday weekend, which lasts four days.

    The men will be sentenced at a later date, and five other men still face charges.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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