Crime

Authorities Recover Some Royal Jewels from Green Vault Heist

CrimeDec 20, 2022

Authorities Recover Some Royal Jewels from Green Vault Heist

Important pieces are still missing following the 2019 robbery of the Green Vault Museum in Dresden, Germany.

German police recently recovered several jewels stolen from the historic Green Vault in Dresden, Germany in a November 2019 heist. (Image credit: © Grünes Gewölbe, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden. Photo: David Brandt)
Berlin—German authorities have recovered some of the 18th century royal jewels stolen from the Green Vault museum in Dresden, Germany in November 2019, though important pieces are still missing.

In a statement, local police said they found 31 items in Berlin, several of which are believed to be intact, including the Polish Order of the White Eagle breast star and a hat decoration.

An epaulette (shoulder piece) set with the famed “Dresden White Diamond” as well as the large bustle bow of Queen Amalie Auguste remain missing.

SEE: Some of the Jewelry Stolen from the Green Vault


The recovered jewels were returned to Dresden where police can forensically examine them. Specialists from the Dresden State Art Collections will verify their authenticity and status.

Police did not share information about where the jewels were found in Berlin because the investigation, known as “Operation Epaulette,” is still active.

In September 2021, six suspects, German nationals ages 22 to 27, were charged with organized robbery and arson after allegedly breaking into the museum and swiping jewelry with an insured value of at least $135 million.

The suspects are believed to have set a fire before the break-in to cut the power supply to the streetlights outside of the museum. They also set fire to a car in a nearby garage.

Their trial began in January and is ongoing, with another trial session scheduled this week.

 Related stories will be right here … 

Authorities said before the recovery of the jewels, prosecutors and the defense were in “exploratory talks” about reaching a settlement that would include the return of the jewels.

Marion Ackermann, Dresden’s State Art Collections director, said at the time of the theft that the true value of the jewels couldn’t be measured.

“We cannot give a value because it is impossible to sell,” she told reporters. “The material value doesn’t reflect the historic meaning.”

Michael Kretschmer, minister president of Saxony, the German state where Dresden is located, took to Twitter at the time to comment on the heist, stating: “It’s not just the state art collections that was robbed, but us Saxons.”

“One can’t understand the history of Saxony without the Green Vault,” he said.

The Green Vault is one of the world’s oldest museums, created in 1723 by Augustus the Strong of Saxony, who wanted to establish Dresden as an arts hub.

His treasury, on display in Dresden’s Royal Palace, includes 4,000 jewels, objets d’art, and other historically significant items.

The museum’s most famous treasure is the Dresden Green Diamond, a 41-carat green diamond, which was on loan to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York for an exhibition at the time of the heist.

Lenore Fedowis the associate editor, news at National Jeweler, covering the retail beat and the business side of jewelry.

The Latest

Supplier BulletinJan 26, 2023
JA New York Spring Brings the Industry Together

For over 100 years, JA New York has played an integral role in facilitating the evolution of our industry, while also honoring past traditions.

TrendsJan 26, 2023
At Vicenzaoro, Paola De Luca Gazes Into Jewelry’s Future

The trend forecaster and her guests explored unconventional jewelry designs, NFTs, AI art, and more during her Trendvision presentation.

CollectionsJan 26, 2023
NDC and Lorraine Schwartz Announce New ‘EDDI’ Class

The Emerging Designers Diamond Initiative provides diamond credit and mentorship to young brands helmed by BIPOC designers.

Brought to you by
Bringing Over 130 Years of Diamond Expertise to Modern Grading

De Beers Institute of Diamonds provides the very best in diamond verification, education and diamond services.

IndependentsJan 26, 2023
Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry Set to Open 10th Store

It will be located in San Antonio’s Alamo Quarry Market and will be Lee Michaels’ third location in the city.

Weekly QuizJan 26, 2023
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge with this short test.
Take the Quiz
Policies & IssuesJan 26, 2023
Diamonds Do Good Names 10 to Board of Directors

Stephanie Gottlieb, Jewelers Mutual’s Mike Alexander, and Craig Rottenberg of Long’s Jewelers are among the new board members.

WatchesJan 25, 2023
These Were 2022’s Top-Selling Watch Brands, Chrono24 Says

Rolex remained No. 1 while a brand known for its pilot watches slipped into the No. 5 spot.

Brought to you by
De Beers Institute of Diamonds Expands to Offer Education

De Beers is sharing over 130 years of experience and expertise through the De Beers Institute of Diamonds with a selection of courses.

MajorsJan 25, 2023
John Hardy Names New CEO

Luxury retail executive Frédéric Levy has taken on the role.

Events & AwardsJan 25, 2023
Couture DAC Accepting Applications for Mentorship Program

Jewelry designers have until early February to apply to take part in Couture's Diversity Action Council program.

CollectionsJan 25, 2023
Stephanie Gottlieb Announces First President, CCO Hire

Morgan P. Richardson joins from La Perla.

Policies & IssuesJan 25, 2023
PGI’s New Portal Wants to Teach You About Platinum

The new portal will share information on responsible platinum sourcing and how it’s used beyond jewelry.

SourcingJan 24, 2023
Tiffany Buys 35 of the Last Diamonds Recovered From Argyle

Purchased directly from Rio Tinto, the collection consists of pinks, purples and one red, none larger than 1.52 carats.

ColumnistsJan 24, 2023
On Data: Here’s How Independent Jewelers Did in 2022

Sherry Smith breaks down retailers’ performance last year, including how natural diamonds fared vs. lab-grown.

GradingJan 24, 2023
GIA and AGS Launch Diamond Light Performance Supplement Report

The AGS Ideal Report by GIA is a digital-only addition to GIA diamond reports.

MajorsJan 24, 2023
WJA Announces New International Board Members

The seven newcomers include executives from David Yurman, De Beers, and GIA.

EditorsJan 23, 2023
Designers to Watch in 2023: Aurelia Demark

The designer finds the modernity in classic motifs and family heirloom jewels.

Policies & IssuesJan 23, 2023
Melanie Grant Named Executive Director of RJC

She has more than 20 years’ experience in watches and jewelry, and says sustainability is the “greatest single issue” facing the industry.

Policies & IssuesJan 23, 2023
AGTA Forms Committee to Standardize Industry ‘Sustainability’ Terms

Its focus are words like “sustainability,” “ethics,” and “responsible sourcing.”

IndependentsJan 23, 2023
10 Jewelry News Stories You Might Have Missed

Another “Designer to Watch” and Kim Kardashian’s auction purchase were among our most-read stories.

MajorsJan 20, 2023
Quality Gold Acquires Herco

Herco President Reuven Itelman is retiring and selling the company, which will relocate to Ohio from California.

Lab-GrownJan 20, 2023
Siobhán Duffy Promoted to Chief Executive of Element Six

She was previously the executive director of sales and marketing for the De Beers Group-owned company.

TrendsJan 20, 2023
Piece of the Week: Loquet London’s Lunar New Year Charm

It’s from a new collection of charms designed to go in the brand’s signature lockets.

IndependentsJan 20, 2023
Edge Retail Academy Announces Annual Award Winner

Lonnie Iannazzo of Vincent Anthony Jewelers is the 2022 William (Wag) Wagner Business Excellence Award recipient.

Lab-GrownJan 19, 2023
GIA Rolls Out Less Expensive Report for Lab-Grown Diamonds

The revised Laboratory-Grown Diamond Report-Dossier still includes the four Cs but doesn’t list growth method or post-growth treatments.

SurveysJan 19, 2023
Inflation, Rising Interest Rates Put a Damper on Holiday Sales

Holiday sales fell short of the National Retail Federation’s expectations, rising only 5 percent year-over-year.

AuctionsJan 19, 2023
Kim Kardashian Bought Princess Diana’s Amethyst Cross

The businesswoman and reality TV star paid nearly $200,000 for the “Attallah Cross.”

×

This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy