TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested seven Chinese nationals believed to be members of the so-called “Pink Panda” gang in the theft of jewels at an exposition in Koto Ward this week, reports TBS News (Jan. 26).
Over the course of the International Jewelry Tokyo show at Tokyo Big Sight, which began on Wednesday, Tokyo police arrested the seven male and female suspects over the alleged theft of pearls and necklaces valued at around 15 million yen from dealers.
Six of the suspects deny the allegations, while the seventh admits to the charges.
According to police, the gang targeted the same event last year. As a preventative measure, officers were on patrol during the exhibition this year, which resulted in the apprehension of the suspects.
The Pink Panda gang, comprised of Chinese nationals, is known for repeatedly targeting shops in Japan and Europe. Members of the group typically steal valuable pieces of jewelry after distracting staff members.
Police are searching for other members of the gang who are believed to have arrived in Japan to target dealers at the show.