Russian Police Seize $2mn Worth of Diamonds and Jewelry from World Cup Heist


More than $2 million worth of diamonds and jewels is discovered buried in a forest by Russian investigators, suspected to be a lost trove from a heist carried out by a Colombian fugitive during the 2018 soccer World Cup, Reuters reported.

After the perpetrator, Edgar Alejandro Valero Valero, admitted to hiding the rings and brooches, police released photos of mud-covered plastic bags loaded with rings and brooches that they claimed were discovered in the woods in Kazan.

According to a statement issued by the police on Thursday, Valero Valero was arrested in Argentina in 2019 and extradited to Russia earlier this year. The suspect’s counsel could not be contacted for comment.

The jewelry, valued at 160 million roubles ($2.2 million), was stolen while being shipped for display at an expo in Kazan, one of the World Cup host cities. Thousands of international soccer fans were admitted to the tournament after Russia waived its usual stringent visa conditions.