National News

What to know about the multi-million-dollar Easter Sunday cash heist in Los Angeles

todayApril 4, 2024

Background

KABC

(LOS ANGELES) — A Los Angeles money storage facility was ransacked on Easter Sunday, leaving a hole in the building’s roof and tens of millions of dollars vanished, sources told ABC News.

Sources said the exact amount that was stolen is not known, but it is believed to be in the tens of millions, which would make it one of the largest cash heists in Los Angeles’ history.

The FBI and Los Angeles Police Department’s investigation into the burglary is ongoing.

Where was the theft?

The multi-million-dollar theft took place Sunday, March 31 at a money storage facility in Sylmar, in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley, law enforcement sources said.

Sources told KABC-TV’s Eyewitness News that the theft happened at a GardaWorld facility in the LA suburb of Sylmar.

GardaWorld is “one of the largest privately owned integrated security and risk” companies internationally, that partners with private companies, governments, humanitarian organizations and multinationals, according to the company’s website.

How did it happen?

The burglars managed to break into the money storage facility completely undetected on Sunday, law enforcement sources said, noting that the first report of the theft was Monday morning.

Officials briefed on the investigation believe the burglars broke through the facility’s roof and managed to enter the area where the money is kept, which may have been a vault.

KABC’s news helicopter AIR7 HD flew over the facility Wednesday and captured footage of “an apparent hole on the side of the building that was boarded up,” as well as “a pile of debris” next to it.

However, it’s currently unconfirmed if that damage is related to the burglary, KABC reported.

How much was stolen?

The exact amount of money that was stolen in the heist has not been officially confirmed, but law enforcement sources say it is believed to be in the tens of millions.

The Los Angeles Times, the first to report the theft, wrote the “thieves made off with as much as $30 million,” citing an LA police official.

Who are the suspects?

Law enforcement sources say there are no suspects in the theft at this point. However, due to the sophistication of the heist, the operation indicates a crew of some kind is responsible, the sources say.

In an interview with Eyewitness News, an unnamed employee questioned if the heist could have been an “inside job.”

“It’s just mind-blowing that you would never suspect it,” the employee said. “$30 million in the Valley, gone. How? Why? I’m still trying to process it. Was it an inside job? Was it just one person? Was it a group? You know, there’s a lot of questions.”

Previous Los Angeles heists

While the details surrounding the massive burglary are still being investigated, Los Angeles has faced several high-profile cash heists in recent history.

On July 11, 2022, jewelry, gemstones, luxury watches and more valuables worth as much as $100 million were stolen from a Brink’s transport vehicle when the driver pulled over at a rest stop in Lebec, an area about 70 miles north of LA.

The largest cash heist in Los Angeles history before Sunday’s incident took place in 1997, when a Dunbar Armored facility in the Fashion District was robbed of $18.9 million, according to the Los Angeles Times.

On September 12, 1997, a group of thieves led by Allen Pace III, a regional safety inspector for the facility at the time, reportedly broke into the building, stole several bags of cash, and destroyed security footage.

After evading arrest for two years, Pace and his accomplices were eventually caught through a money-laundering scheme and sentenced to prison, according to the newspaper.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

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