Pictures of alleged suspects in MBS theft emerge

SINGAPORE - Pictures have emerged of the trio who allegedly stole a diamond ornament from a shop at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) on Christmas night last year.

Closed-circuit television footage of a couple and a girl were published by Chinese evening daily, Shin Min Daily News on Monday evening.

In the footage, the girl, who is believed to be about 10 years old, is seen wearing a pink and white dress, with a dark-coloured bag slung in front of her.  

She was earlier seen walking into the shop with a couple who looked to be in their 30s and 40s, and they appeared to behave like a family. The man was wearing a collared shirt in white and grey, while the woman had long hair and was wearing a striped blouse, and carrying a dark-coloured bag.

Shin Min also identified Bulgari as the MBS shop where the theft occurred. Bulgari is a high-end luxury story which retails in gemstone jewellery, luxury watches, perfumes and leather goods. The stolen item, which was previously reported as a diamond ornament worth several hundred thousands, was identified as a diamond ring worth at least $1.8 million.

The evening daily also described the couple's modus operandi. They walked into the store, asking to be shown some jewellery. The woman also spoke to a member of the staff in an excited manner, a tactic believed to distract the employee. In another part of the store, another sales staff was attending to other customers, while the girl with the couple roamed unsupervised in the store.

When no one was noticing, the girl slipped to the back of a display case, where store employees would be stationed. CCTV footage showed that she squatted down and was hidden from view by the display case as her hand could be seen reaching into the drawer. 

Shin Min estimated that the diamond ring is between 8 and 9 carats, and is a grade D, internally flawless diamond.