Two pieces of jewelry that were stolen from a museum in the eastern German city of Dresden in November have been offered for sale, an Israeli security firm said on Friday.
The pieces were part of several jewelry sets that were stolen in a heist at Dresden’s Grünes Gewölbe, or Green Vault, in late November.
Security firm CGI Group said that it was contacted by individuals claiming to have two of the stolen jewels; they apparently want to sell them for €9 million ($10 million).
The two jewels in question were the Dresden White Diamond and the breast star of the Polish Order of the White Eagle (pictured above), CGI Group chief executive Zvika Nave was reported as saying by German news agency dpa.
“All information was shared in real time with Dresden state prosecutors,” Nave said.
CGI Group said that the suspects communicated via email and demanded payment in Bitcoin. The suspects also claimed that they’d used various encryption techniques to make the emails difficult to track.
The firm also claimed that it was hired by the museum to find the stolen jewelry and review the museum’s security measures.
Museum voices skepticism
The state body in charge of Dresden’s Green Vault museum treated the security firm’s claims with caution.
“The company also did not establish contact with us,” said Stephan Adam, the spokesman for the Dresden State Art Collections (SKD).
The SKD said that it had no information regarding the offer to purchase the jewels. They also stressed that CGI Group had not been contacted to carry out investigations into the theft.
The statements appeared to contradict the security firm’s claims that it was working with local authorities.
Dresden’s prosecutor’s office said that it was still looking into the information.
In the weeks since the robbery, authorities have been hunting down leads but have not yet recovered any of the jewels.
In the early hours of November 25, two thieves broke a window and entered Dresden’s Green Vault museum.
The suspects then used an ax to break into display cases in the jewel room — snagging three sets of jewelry that contained an estimated 100 pieces. The whole heist lasted just minutes before the suspects took off in a car.
The robbery of one of Europe’s largest treasure collections made international headlines and no jewels have yet been recovered.
rs/msh (AFP, dpa)