“Enormous” amount of gold taken: Rotterdam business raided in gold bar theft investigation

Police at gold theft in Rotterdam, Coolsingel
Police secure the Coolsingel in Rotterdam where millions of euros worth of gold was reported stolen. Dec. 17, 2019PolitiePolitie

Police in Rotterdam raided an office building on the Coolsingel as part of an investigation into the theft of gold. Witnesses told local broadcaster Rijnmond that officers were seen Tuesday morning storming into Safe Deposit Nederland, a company which rents out safety deposit boxes in the heart of the city.

One person was arrested for stealing an "enormous" amount of gold bars, a spokesperson for the police told Nu.nl. He is a 61-year-old man from Oud-Beijerland in Zuid-Holland, police confirmed in a statement. The arrested suspect was a former employee of Safe Deposit Nederland, an unnamed source told Rijnmond. 

"The investigation into the large gold robbery started a few weeks ago after the police was informed of the theft of a huge amount of gold bars worth millions of euros," police said. The person who filed the report "had ordered a gold trading company to trade its gold, and was told by that company that there was a problem. His gold was no longer present in the vault."

Several locations around the Netherlands were being searched, including the Coolsingel facility. A tenant in that building told a Rijnmond reporter that police were emptying out the lockboxes, some of which contained gold. Police did not immediately confirm this claim.

The location is the former building of the Hollandsche Bank Unie, a once-independent financial institution that was later owned by ABN Amro before its sale to Deutsche Bank ten years ago.

A heavily-armed tactical unit of expert marksmen was deployed as part of the police response, police said.

Safe Deposit Nederland began operations over two years ago.

Police at gold theft in Rotterdam, Coolsingel
Police secure the Coolsingel in Rotterdam where millions of euros worth of gold was reported stolen. Dec. 17, 2019PolitieTwitter

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