A shootout erupted at Santiago airport when a group of armed men tried to seize a large shipment of cash.
An attempted multimillion-dollar airport robbery in Chile leads to a shootout that kills the would-be thief and an airport security official.
The failed attempt took place on Wednesday morning at Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport in the capital, Santiago. Between 10 and 12 robbers were attacked as airport workers removed $32.5 million in cash from a plane.
A valuable cargo arrived on LATAM’s flight from Miami that Brinks was to take [security] Eduardo Baeza, the public prosecutor leading the investigation, said:
Organized crime has been a concern in Chile in recent years, and the airport has been targeted in the past. In 2017, about $18 million was stolen by an armed group, and three years later a similar robbery stole $15 million from an armored truck.
Deputy Interior Minister Manuel Monsalve told reporters on Wednesday that security officials were involved in a shootout with the thieves, thwarting “a highly organized, highly armed and probably very well planned robbery.”
Authorities said one of the attackers and an airport security official were killed.
Monsalve told reporters that the thieves tied up a security guard and entered the airport in three cars. AFP reports that the thieves breached a door and proceeded to the cargo hold, where they hoped to intercept $32.5 million before it could be transported domestically.
After confronting security officers, the gunmen reportedly fled, setting two cars on fire on a nearby highway. The search for the culprits is underway.
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