“Pink Panther” Thieves Rock the Jewelry Industry

September 30, 2013

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. string [string] (n.) – a series of similar events
Example: The police are investigating a string of robberies that took place last month in London.

2. audacious [aw-DEY-shuh s] (adj.)  – extremely bold and showing a lack of fear
 Example: The men are discussing an audacious plan to steal the famous painting from the museum.

3. heist [hahyst] (n.) – an act of stealing highly valuable goods
Example: Three robbers were arrested in an attempted heist at the bank last night.

4. in broad daylight [in brawd DEY-lahyt] (idiom) – happening during the day
Example: The police easily found witnesses because the robbery was committed in broad daylight.

5. concentrated [KON-suh n-trey-tid] (adj.) – located in a single place
Example:  The jewelry stores are concentrated in the center of the city.


Read the text below.

An infamous gang has been making headlines around the world for a string of high-profile robberies across Europe and Asia.

Named after a famous series of crime movies, the “Pink Panthers” are notorious for some of the most audacious diamond robberies in history.  They are believed to have stolen at least $100 million worth of diamonds in July 2013 alone, including some recent robberies in Cannes [kan] and French Riviera.

According to the FBI, the Pink Panthers plan their heists very carefully, and are known for their incredible attention to detail. Previous robberies, for example, involved hiding jewels inside face cream containers and crashing limousines through jewelry store windows. Some incidents even occurred in broad daylight.

One of their known tactics is to get rid of the stolen diamonds as soon as possible. In one previous case, the jewels showed up in the U.S. just a few days after they were stolen in Europe.

The U.S. is known to be a large market for secondhand diamonds, while New York City is known as the diamond trade capital of the world. Diamond stores are concentrated between Fifth and Sixth avenues. In fact, billions of dollars flow through the area at any given time as expensive diamonds are sold or traded. Due to this condition, many jewels in New York turn out to be stolen, and are thus often sold to unsuspecting customers.

After the investigations were conducted, authorities revealed that the Pink Panthers are not as glamorous as what is portrayed in films. They, in fact, live a very cheap life that mainly involves running away from the police.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Why do you think people enjoy reading stories or watching movies about big robberies?
·         How can governments discourage citizens from purchasing stolen goods? Discuss with your tutor.

Discussion B

·         In your opinion, what is the reason behind people’s desire to own expensive jewelry? Please briefly explain.
·         Do you believe that jewelry items such as diamonds and gold are a good investment? Why or why not?


September 30, 2013