It was a crime spree that stretched over eight states and more
than 24 jewelry stores across the country. With a high level of
sophistication and planning, a team of thieves were able to steal
millions of dollars’ worth in diamond jewelry over an 18-month period,
starting in December 2009 until May 2011.
hard cash, police were able to track down and nab the thieves.
“What got ’em was greed. If they would have just stuck to the plan but
not showed the money off publicly, we might still be trying to figure
out who they are right now,” Portland Police Det. Eric McDaniel said.
from the David Marguilis’ jewelry store in Portland, Oregon, on Dec.
15, 2010, police got their first big break when a tip helped identify
the man who ran out of the store with the diamonds as Victor Lupis.
that there was an entire cast of characters involved in the theft and
began naming the other thieves, police said.
The thieves all played different roles and had catchy nicknames such as
the “risk reducer,” the “runner,” the “hero stopper” and the “getaway
driver,” Lupis told police.
was the ringleader, the mastermind behind their whole operation.
the entire event while communicating through a disposable phone.
where the risks were reduced and there, the likelihood of them getting
caught was zero,” McDaniel said.
Portland jewelry store, Young returned to the store during all the
confusion and wiped them off, Lupis told investigators.
of a crime family and threatened retaliation to those who dared to cross
him. He was also a master manipulator, persuading new recruits with the
promise of money, Lupis told police.
Before the thefts, Young also went to stores pretending to be looking to
purchase an item while actually checking out the store’s security
“They usually go after a female, and an older female if they can because
they just believe that they’re just the most vulnerable person to steal
from,” McDaniel said. “Once they kind of built a relationship with an
employee at the jewelry store, they would start looking for the
Without Lupis, Jack Cannon often played the role of the runner, McDaniel said.
“he’s a manipulator and only cares about himself,” McDaniel said.
dedicated to Jack Cannon about all the girls that hate him,” McDaniel
“He was dressed up in a suit and tie. He drew attention to himself in
that the one that was able to identify him thought he was attractive,”
Tampa Police Department Det. Melinda Rewis, who was the lead
investigator of the jewel ring’s robbery at King Jewelers in Tampa,
Florida, told “20/20.”
the Tampa jewelry store, Cannon, who was charged in the robbery, didn’t
show up for future court appearances and continued his robbery pattern
across the country, Rewis said.
“What’s memorable about Jack Cannon is his demeanor and the way he talks
to people, that’s what people most remember about him,” Las Vegas Det.
Aaron Lee, who investigated Cannon’s involvement in a robbery at the
Jewelers of Las Vegas store, told “20/20.” “This was a classic con man.
He did everything right to make people feel comfortable when he went in
The group’s social media photos of their travel helped detectives track
their movements, eventually helping lead to their arrests.
committed diamond thefts, we were able to look on the social media
sites and see some correlating photos from where the crimes had
occurred,” Hughes said.
At the sentencing hearing this past February, a federal judge called
Young a crafty, intelligent man who moved around his less savvy
co-defendants like chess pieces. Young was sentenced to nine and a half
years in prison.
something to try to incapacitate the good citizen trying to stop the
thief,” McDaniel said.
diamonds before and spent some time in prison for their efforts.
stolen diamonds that they could sell for cash at the Three Gold Brothers
“They found a shop in Philadelphia that would play by their rules, so to speak, and taking their merchandise,” McDaniel said.
“He can never bring himself to do the actual theft of the diamonds, but
his big role was to steal cars, usually minivans, and be the getaway
driver,” McDaniel said.
“You steal a car, and it was never registered to you. There’s nothing on
paper showing you put money down for it, and that way you can just
leave it,” McDaniel said. “So there was a risk there, but I think it was
a smart one.”
Source- ABC News