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VIDEO: Police arrest five after shocking theft of famous San Francisco jewelry store

Surveillance cameras captured the exact moment when the thieves, using hammers and other tools, forced the main entrance and carried out the robbery

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June 19, 2024 1:11am

Updated: June 19, 2024 8:10pm

During a heist that lasted less than three minutes, but carried out by about 20 people, a famous jewelry store in Sunnyvale, south of San Francisco, was looted on June 12. The violent incident left the establishment severely damaged, with display cases smashed and jewelry missing.

Surveillance cameras captured the exact moment the thieves, using hammers and other tools, forced open the main entrance of PNG Jewelers at 1:27 p.m. With their faces covered by hoods, the assailants quickly dispersed through the store, breaking almost all the display cases and taking as much jewelry as possible before fleeing.

The Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety confirmed that no one was injured during the attack. The total value of the stolen jewelry has not yet been determined, but the crime scene suggests the losses are significant.

Immediately following the report of the robbery, Sunnyvale Police responded quickly. According to FOX News, they managed to identify two suspicious vehicles fleeing on Highway 101. Although one of the cars managed to escape, the other was located. During the chase, the vehicle's occupants threw the stolen jewelry out of the car in an attempt to get rid of the evidence.

Five of the suspects were arrested after abandoning the car and fleeing on foot along the highway.

They have since been identified as Tonga Latu, Tavake Esafe, Ofa Ahomana, Kilifi Leaaetoa and Afuhia Lavakeiaho.

The five now face multiple charges, including armed robbery, felonious vehicle evading, resisting arrest, burglary, conspiracy to commit a crime, vandalism, possession of burglary tools and outstanding warrants.

Authorities continue to investigate to identify and capture the other suspects involved in this coordinated attack. Surveillance videos are being analyzed in detail for clues that could lead to more arrests. “We are still calculating the total amount of losses, but we continue to work hard to recover the stolen property and ensure that those responsible face justice,” added a police spokesperson.

The Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety has called on anyone with additional information about the incident to contact them.