Two Killed In Foiled Multimillion-Dollar Heist Attempt At Chilean Airport
Chilean authorities have foiled multimillion-dollar heist attempt at Chilean airport, which left two people dead and three injured.
The incident took place on Monday, March 6, 2023, and involved armed assailants attempting to steal millions of dollars in cash that was being transported on a commercial flight.
At Santiago's Arturo Merino Bentez International Airport, thieves and authorities from Chile's DGAC aviation agency engaged in a gunfight that was extensively broadcast on social media.
Chief prosecutor Eduardo Baeza stated on Wednesday that a DGAC airport security agent and one of the thieves were killed in the "attack." It occurred at at 7:50 a.m. local time (5:50 a.m. ET).
The Heist Attempt
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According to authorities, the heist attempt was well-planned and involved a group of at least 10 heavily armed assailants who entered the airport's cargo area and attempted to steal a shipment of cash that was being loaded onto a commercial flight bound for the northern city of Antofagasta.
Manuel Monsalve, the deputy interior minister of Chile, told reporters from the presidential palace La Moneda in Santiago that security personnel had stopped a highly coordinated, heavily equipped, and likely well-planned heist.
Raul Jorquera, the general director of the DGAC, told reporters that no passengers were in danger and that the criminals used "high capacity weapons" to grab the money.
Recent years have seen an increase in organized crime in Chile, including intricate rail heists and multimillion-dollar thefts at the country's primary harbor.
The police response was swift and decisive, with officers engaging in a shootout with the assailants. Two of the assailants were killed in the shootout, and three others were injured and taken into custody. The remaining assailants managed to escape in a vehicle.
The investigation into the heist attempt is ongoing, and authorities have not yet determined the motive behind the attack or the identities of the assailants. However, authorities have stated that they believe the heist attempt was carried out by a well-organized criminal group.
Impact On The Airport And The Region
The foiled heist attempt has caused concern among authorities and travelers alike, with many questioning the security measures in place at the airport.
The Santiago International Airport is one of the busiest airports in South America and serves as a major hub for travel to and from the region.
The incident also highlights the ongoing issue of organized crime in the region and the challenges faced by law enforcement agencies in combating these criminal groups.
The foiled multimillion-dollar heist attempt at the Santiago International Airport serves as a reminder of the ongoing challenges faced by law enforcement agencies in combatting organized crime.
While the swift and decisive response by authorities prevented the loss of millions of dollars in cash, the incident raises questions about the effectiveness of security measures at the airport and the need for continued efforts to combat criminal activity in the region.