Smash & Grab: The Story of the Pink Panthers (2013) Movie Script

This programme contains some strong
language some scenes which some
viewers may find upsetting
Now, they're known as
the Pink Panthers.
They're a gang that steals jewels
from high-end stores all
over the world.
And one of their alleged members...
Armed with this Magnum revolver and
helped by an accomplice, he pounced.
We are talking about
an international criminal group
made up of more than 200 people.
They are organised
in independent cells
and they live in different countries.
These are all people
from the former Yugoslavia.
The core of the group
comes from Montenegro.
There is another substantial
group from Serbia.
One of the Panthers said
that every robbery that is lasting
more than 22 seconds is a great risk.
There's no alarm, no
security system, they can be good,
that cannot be broken.
Two hours, you're in another country
and you are safe.
That's what I like, you know.
I have a lot to tell you about
these robberies and there were many.
But the best job I've did
was in Spain.
We waited for a festival
that was about to take place
and we waited a long time.
It was some kind of
a religious thing, fiesta -
music, dancing.
Some kind of noise that they couldn't
hear us banging through the walls.
And now the action could begin.
My name is Novak, you know,
and people call us Pink Panthers.
And English people, they call us,
because of the film.
I read somewhere that one inspector,
I don't know where,
he said that we are terrorists
or something like that.
Modern terrorists,
but it's not true.
I mean, we are just taking something
unimportant for rich people,
for us - who doesn't have that,
you know?
We started with some houses,
you know,
some cars and something like that.
But jewelleries,
we find out, is much easier.
Jewellery's small, it's expensive,
it gets you more money.
We can be in China,
we can be in Singapore, Tokyo, Dubai.
Wherever they have rich stuff,
we can be there.
Here, we are really in the middle
of the old town of Geneva.
And there you have all the...all
the biggest jewelleries
with million and million
of stuff in the windows.
There you have Chatila...
This jewellery was attacked
by the Pinks in 2009.
That mean they enter by this door
and after that,
there were, in this road,
two scooter...
You say scooter in English?
..were waiting and
when they finished the robberies,
they jump on the scooter
and they leave the place.
Gubelin was attacked
one or two times by the Pinks.
Graff - Graff Geneva...
..De Grisogono, Chopard, Adler...
About the statistics or numbers,
approximately we have 500 cases
of robberies and burglaries
made by the Pinks.
Speaking about the value
of all the robberies,
approximately 300 millions
of US dollars.
If you take all their crimes
they are the best jewellery thieves
in the world.
I know, but like you say,
it's a Pink Panther!
And there are colleagues who give
me that one or two years ago.
They were involved in a case
we began here and they work on.
And they find this big Pink Panther
and they bring it here.
And it's a joke between
all the teams in Europe
working on the Pink Panthers.
PRODUCER: Can you tell me, when did
you first hear of the Pink Panthers?
It was in 2000. At the beginning,
it was different.
For me, it was different
as the other teams
about the organisation -
it was more organised.
The action was very,
very fast, when they come.
'They have made a lot of robberies,
so that mean when they come,
'they are confident, they are sure
about "what I have to do".
'The preparation is very, very good.
'That means they come sometimes
some months before
'to try to find which jewellery
they are going to attack.
'And after that, to know exactly
how they are going to work,
'how many people they need to be
in there,
'how they are going to escape.
'And after that, they do
the robbery.
'Sometimes, working on bad guys,'
there is something very particular,
very special, between...
there is a respect but,
at the same time, it is like a game.
They know that we are hunting them.
Because it's a little bit like that
from Pacino and De Niro in the film.
It was like that,
but they are always movies.
They are not the reality. That's...
We just must remember
that they are bad guys
going inside jewellery with guns.
'We understood in this time
that they were able to do things,
'that nobody had done before.'
The first time, we didn't know
that they were Pink Panthers.
You know, this name did not exist,
at this time.
The first time, we just think it was
one robbery or two robberies,
that's all.
We did not identify, the first time,
the importance of the group.
It was a challenge
cos they are
crossing the borders very fast,
after the robbery - very easily.
We started to understand
that it was a group.
The only thing we know - that they
were coming from former Yugoslavia.
So that's all we had, the first time.
And so we started to identify
the different city they were
coming from in former Yugoslavia -
especially Montenegro,
from Cetinje.
Few Americans know little,
if anything, about Yugoslavia.
One reason is because not many
people know where to find it.
Actually, it's really quite simple -
just go to Italy and make a right.
A popular misconception
about Yugoslavia is that
it is a neighbouring country
of the Soviet Union. In actuality,
it borders seven European countries,
none of them being Russia.
A bigger misconception than
the location, though,
is the country itself.
When most Americans
think of Yugoslavia,
this is not what comes to mind...
..or this...
..or this...
..or even this.
'The first time I heard about
Panthers were in 2004.
'It was a surprise.
'And my first thought
when newspapers published'
that the perpetrators
were three Serbs,
I said, "Fuck!
This is all we needed."
My second thought, however, was,
"Hmm, interesting.
"How very skilful people."
Because I didn't know
how they did it.
Well, before 2000,
we don't have Pink Panthers.
Some people started with
so big and exclusive heists...
..mostly in Europe, only Europe.
And after it, we have some of the
Panthers robbed out of Europe.
They went to Bahrain.
They went to Japan.
They went to Dubai.
I'm working right now for BIRN,
Balkan Investigative Reporting
And, at the moment, I am looking
for Pink Panthers, like I'm mad.
I'm working for more than
two years on this.
At first, I didn't believe it was
possible to find any of them.
Why would any say, "Look, I'm Pink
Panther, I'm going to help you"?
So that required a lot of work,
a lot of travelling,
a lot of phone calls...
..finding sources on the places
you would never believe
you can find them.
That usually meant being on the road
all the time,
travelling to the region
all the time,
meeting all kinds of people
all the time.
I must talk to dozens of different
all kinds of people,
meet them, be ready to meet them
at any time.
You must make them trust you -
that you are not going to
talk to the police,
that you are not going to put
any of them in danger.
If you know, when you do something
so extraordinary which attracts
the attention of the whole world
and many people say, "Bravo,
you robbed the bigger criminals."
Well, that can light some fire
inside. I believe so.
OK, so if we start with...
Could he just introduce himself?
OK, Mike, so we've agreed that we
will record this interview,
but not show your face.
So, we'll use your real words
but we'll animate you and your voice.
No face. Not my real voice.
So, tell me, who are the
Pink Panthers?
Well, I don't have a badge that
says Pink Panther on it.
We are a network of teams
working together
and as I was involved,
I became part of the network.
Everybody has their specific job
to do, understand?
So we all depend on each other.
Those in the inner circle are called
But you have guys who don't know who
their bosses or associates are.
You have to be in with them
for a long time dealing with these
kind of bigger jobs.
You get tips from your own
but there is also a wider
chain of command.
You never know where you stand in
the hierarchy,
because you never meet the boss.
You don't know this guy is the big
boss. There's no such thing.
No big boss.
You need a brain, knowledge.
And experience to do this work.
This means the jobs that we do and
the other gangs that do sex, drugs,
murder, they rarely cross over.
So, tell me,
what is it about the diamond?
I don't know why people spend
money on diamonds.
I don't suffer from this
showing off.
I have a Rolex, but as a souvenir.
But diamonds, nah, they don't
attract me.
For me, diamonds mean good cash.
Nothing else.
Not anyone can do this job.
You must be born to do it.
You must firstly trust in yourself...
..because if you are weak,
you can't do it.
Women in the Panthers have to
I was extremely good looking.
30kgs less.
I had long red hair at the time.
Although I had frequent
transformations, very frequent.
I would be sometimes blonde,
sometimes brunette.
You can only have one in each gang.
And we have high requirements for
the women.
They have the leading roles.
They have to do the main job,
so they do the scouting,
they enter, they record
and they bring the plan.
That means the woman has to be
she has to be beautiful and she has
to love money.
The guys do a great majority of jobs.
But they also need a woman on their
Everyone always thinks it's the men,
men, men.
But without woman nothing would be
Lela has to be dressed in most
expensive clothes, you know?
Most elegant clothes, wearing
expensive jewellery.
Also to have her own chauffeur.
She had to act exactly like Madonna.
I had to look very powerful. It was
stuff by Burberry, then Chanel.
Whatever was in and whatever was
I wouldn't even know some of the
brands that existed.
But the stuff purchased, it was well
known that it was very expensive.
So, how did it all begin?
In the beginning it was individuals.
Small shops, casinos.
We went where there was money, gold.
And eventually, jobs got bigger
and better.
When I was in Italy, I worked with
this guy from Kosovo.
Like his apprentice.
He could open a safe in two minutes.
We were together for four years
and by the end, I could open a cat
in no time.
What's the cat? The cat,
we call a cat, the safe.
Jewellery is like a magnet
for crime.
It's worth a lot and the crooks
want it. Hello, I'm Mike for...
Jewellery crime is big business,
often run by organised criminals
who won't hesitate to use violence
in the city, suburbs or out in the
Jewellery crime causes $1.1 billion
in losses each year
from all sources, including
But in most stores,
most of the jewellery does end up
here at closing time,
and even though it's not as common
as you might think,
the safe is still a target.
I have a lot to tell you about
these robberies,
and there were many, but the best
job I did was in Spain.
Perfect plan.
The jewellery shop was a perfect
It was a beautiful boutique,
you know.
Very high class.
There was, in this city, a most
beautiful jewellery shop.
Everything with diamonds. Rings with
diamonds, bracelets, necklaces.
Very beautiful.
Jewellery rarely achieves that
kind of sparkle, very rarely,
but we had no access,
no access at all.
So we had to do it in a different
We tried many ways.
We had different ideas about the job
and then, finally, we had the idea -
just to hire a shop next door.
Next to the jewellery shop was
the souvenir shop.
In order to get to the
jewellery shop,
we needed to go through this second
shop first.
She met the Spanish shop owner
and befriended him.
She had to lure the guy into a trap.
I didn't go to seduce him,
but my very appearance
contributed to his joy.
He employed me at his place.
Not to work, because I couldn't speak
the language well enough,
but to oversee things.
She had to do a good job
because we needed to gain his trust.
Of course, her beauty helped.
He thought they could get closer,
that they would be
together every day.
Well, I don't see why I should feel
It is his problem that he
fell in love with me
and that my presence brought him
lots of pleasure.
I couldn't do anything about that.
So when she was there, she examined
the wall,
which gave us an idea that we could
knock it down
and where we could exit...
..which way we could run.
She was there so she could scan
and find that information,
see if the plan would be possible.
The reason why I spent a lot of time
with the Spanish guy was so that
I could observe exactly
when the jewellery shop closed -
when would it open, when they
would go out for a coffee,
for how long they would be out.
Generally, it was all about them.
In fact, I'm the most important part
of the job, and I'm aware of that.
My one mistake would be their fall,
so if I make an error somewhere,
they are doomed.
Tell me about your life growing up
in Yugoslavia.
I'm from the border of Montenegro
and Albania, actually.
I'm 48. My father was born Muslim
and a communist.
He was our idol.
Tito and the Communist Party of
Yugoslavia declared
the Republic of Yugoslavia in 1945.
People now remember of that
period like the golden age.
He was a very authoritarian ruler.
He liked his position.
But he also had a strong sense of
what is necessary to do.
was made by many different nations,
different religions,
different ethnic groups - we had
more than 20 ethnic groups here,
and I believe it was very hard to
put them all together,
and keep that country alive.
As kids, you know, I had in my class
alongside Gypsy and other,
Albanian, Croatian...
Germans, Jews, Muslims.
It was really amazing.
I only got my first passport
when I was 16 or 17,
but I couldn't wait for the summer.
In May, the first tourists
would come.
Germans, French, Italian
and English would come too
and they would go swim naked.
I would sell them Coke and beer.
Wherever there was an opportunity to
peek, to watch naked women,
I would sit down to watch.
My first love was this German woman.
I'm still thinking of her now.
That's how I actually got to learn
my German.
See how it's all coming back.
As a young girl, I lived in
It was a small house
where my grandmother lived.
But my aunt came for me and my life
continued in Hamburg, in Germany.
I had a wonderful time, wonderful.
This is something that remains
stamped in my memory.
I was taken by the extravagance
and luxury there was.
I thought, "I will become something
and somebody in my life."
I couldn't go out that much,
as my aunt was a very strict woman.
She was working in Yugoslav
restaurant and she got me
a job to wash dishes and to work at
the bar.
I had a chance to meet all kinds of
and that's how I met my boyfriend.
I was still a child, 17 years old,
I was still a child, 17 years old,
and there was some kind of chemistry
between us.
And after that, he started giving me
all kinds of gifts,
perfumes, necklaces, bracelets,
and so we got together.
Ladies and gentlemen, we would
like to inform you about a few
things that will be of interest to
you during the flight.
I was in love and I was doing
everything just to be with him.
It was arranged that we all go
to Spain,
but this was where everything
was clear to me -
this was a criminal job
that he was doing.
When he confessed, I wasn't bothered
with it at all.
In fact, I asked him to introduce me
to his job so I can be closer to him.
I was very anxious, nervous,
I wanted to do it,
but in that moment, I thought to
myself, "How am I going to?"
Somewhere in the back of my mind
I was afraid, but I never showed it.
I would go all or nothing.
And I became the scout, I entered the
shop, I recorded where everything is,
I told them.
Lela would then simply
enter the boutique,
and she would register everything,
solely with her eyes...
..where everything is, the
distances, how far things are,
what she thinks can be done, to what
extent, who is there...
how many of them, how many cameras.
Every single detail, she has to
It is only a woman who can do
this job properly.
A man would stick out too much.
She can ask for a necklace,
she can ask for a ring.
I had a very large hat.
I looked like a real lady.
And I had that ring.
That ring was very expensive.
And I told them that I lost weight
and that I came for them
to make it smaller.
While they were doing this,
I had plenty of time to assess
and check out everything around me.
I couldn't see the safe,
we call the safe the kitten,
I couldn't locate it, but everything
else I had to assess.
When I would go back home, there was
a man who would sketch it all
based on my story.
He drew it all.
The woman didn't take
part in the action.
She gave us the key,
gave us information
and her part of the job is finished.
Most of the time, I felt strong,
but I sometimes had a feeling that
I was drowning,
that everything is falling
to pieces...
..but when I would see my boyfriend
next to me, it would lift me up.
You have to lock yourself in a room.
You would see other
people from the balcony,
a girlfriend or a boyfriend
walking in the open,
we were not allowed to do that.
You would feel a kind of collapse
somewhere in your soul.
Sometimes nothing,
neither money or gold or any
kind of wealth would give me
as much satisfaction as the mere
thought that one day we would go away
together and be alone,
hope that we will live normal life,
like everyone else.
It took about four months
to complete all this planning
..and it cost a lot of money.
After all that, I had to disappear
because that was the arrangement
between us.
I would have beauticians coming
to my house, hairdressers,
not even he can recognise me
but he would tell me
that I have to
do frequent makeovers
because of myself and because of the
false documents.
That sounds fun and quite glamorous,
the transformations.
Did you enjoy it? No, I hated it.
They weren't fun to do
because I liked the way I looked,
and sometimes those transformations
would bother me,
like I lost my identity.
I felt like a doll
that was experimented on.
Tito died in 1980.
It was like my father died,
just like my father.
I can't explain the mourning.
They took us to visit his
mausoleum - Kuca Cveca, it's called.
You would have to queue
for two days
to visit his tomb
and pay your tribute -
the entire Yugoslavia was there.
This is when it all started.
You could sense the separation
coming from the point
that each republic would
have their own president.
The first time
I saw Milosevic was on television.
I saw him
during this big rally in Kosovo.
The separation
and hatred already started by then.
In every city, there was
a national ID.
You're a Serbian, Albanian,
this guy's from Croatia,
you know, from Kosovo.
I don't know, great tension -
everything was cracking open.
For me, as an Albanian
in Montenegro,
the hatred was very visible,
just pure hatred.
This is where the huge
partition started.
CROWD CHAN After Tito died,
separatist groups in different
nations of Yugoslavia
just rose up...
..and they really contributed to the
final end of that country... its dismantling.
I think that you'll have to agree
that Yugoslavia is a pretty
spectacular country, and we haven't
even seen half of it yet.
Tomorrow night,
Belgrade, the capital of Yugoslavia,
the site of the 1984 Winter Olympics
and then, Dubrovnik,
one of the most exciting,
unique and charming little
cities in all of the world.
I saw it last night
and I can't wait for you to see it,
so I'll see you tomorrow
night from Yugoslavia.
REPORTER: 'The ethnically mixed
communities of Muslims, Serbs
'and Croats have traditionally lived
together in peace...
'..until a majority of the people
in Bosnia-Herzegovina
'voted for independence,
'denying Serbia its plans
for a newly-formed Yugoslavia.'
All the darkness of Milosevic's
left a huge mark on people's soul.
Many people just like... the war zones,
you know, sent to Dubrovnik
or Bosnia to kill, to rape.
I like this area, I really do.
It's so green.
This is the street where
I spent many hours during the '90s,
because I was demonstrating against
Slobodan Milosevic and his rule.
It has very strong
and very fresh memories.
I mean, just...
We tried to say,
"Look, it's time for you to go.
"You are taking us
into total disaster."
It is just interesting to pass here
after so many years.
Nice treat.
REPORTER: 'It's time to turn up
the pressure on Yugoslavia,
'the European community
decided today.
'Behind closed doors,
'they imposed immediate trade
sanctions against Yugoslavia,
'and the UN Security Council
is to be asked
'to coordinate an oil embargo.'
What we've decided today
is to impose
sanctions on the whole of Yugoslavia.
Over time, that will certainly
build into an effective pressure.
I don't know how long.
MIKE: By the end of '94,
it was the core of Milosevic' regime
and activities.
You know, times were such
that you don't know
what tomorrow's going to bring.
We all took this rhythm of,
"Come on, come on,"
smuggling everywhere,
crime everywhere,
nobody thought about real jobs.
I mean, there's no real job.
I had a good deal of money.
When there was a job, cracking safe,
I would go abroad for a month
or two.
It was a good job, profitable, you
know, we were dancing to the music.
It was the time of turbo-folk music.
Every time I hear it, I feel chaos.
Everybody was trying to swindle you,
rob you, cheat,
it was bare survival -
just deceit after deceit.
There was not a single night that
somebody wasn't beaten up or killed.
The black market has flourished
under the sanctions.
There is a widespread network
of illegal dealings in all spheres
and it is done with the quiet
consent of Serbian government.
MILENA: It is the truth that crime
erupted during the wars,
which is usual and expected.
Many people became criminals,
but not all.
We all had choice.
It wasn't easy, it was difficult.
I could become prostitute or
drug smuggler or oil smuggler,
but I've not.
REPORTER: 'It's not over yet.
'Hundreds were kicked out of Kosovo
today, literally -
'kicked and beaten at the border
'within sight of freedom.
'And so, the biggest forced
exodus in Europe goes on
'with enough bitterness to ensure
'that Albanians and Serbs will find
it hard ever to live together again.'
Europe couldn't do much, you know,
it was getting too big -
refugees from Bosnia,
from Kosovo, from Croatia...
..and 70% of these refugees
went to Europe,
and so the criminal went to Europe,
and this is the beginning
of Pink Panther.
MILENA: Some change just happened
in 2000 -
a few people started to rob
really, really big values.
OK, they are using guns.
This is to scare.
That is the only purpose of gun,
but one of their condition
is no victims.
They were actually creating
the signature
of what we know now as
Pink Panthers.
And as one Panther said,
"After that, you have ten years
of very good life."
MIKE: So we waited for a festival
that was about to take place,
and we waited a long time.
It was some kind of a religious
a fiesta, music, dancing,
just some kind of noise.
That was what we were waiting for -
some kind of noise that they
couldn't hear us
banging through the walls.
Because the crooks need time,
they're more likely to hit
safes on weekends or holidays.
They're clever about finding ways to
do it without attracting attention.
There was four of us plus one guy in
a van.
We were completely
hidden by the people in the street.
We were all dressed up,
we had our masks, bodysuits,
completely covered up -
you couldn't see us at all,
and now the action could begin.
We only needed to pickaxe the wall.
In the end, there was a hole this big
and we squeezed through it
into the boutique behind.
We knew everything that was in a
glass case was alarmed. It's a trick.
They always do this.
They alarm cheap stuff like a decoy.
But the real booty is in the save!
So we got to the safe, we try to take
it out with the pickaxe...
But we couldn't. We were looking
at it and there was no chance.
Then we saw the screws were inside
the concrete
and we had the idea to lift it up
with the car jack.
Lucky there was one in the van.
We got out, we took the safe out
of the shop and we put it in the van.
People around us,
fiesta, fireworks - incredible.
Thing is, there's no panic
when you do the job.
The panic begins when you run.
But we drove away through
the people.
And we went away into the woods.
We got out by a lake,
I remember.
Somewhere dark, somewhere safe.
Somewhere secure.
And then we began to open the safe.
You get the safes
that are mechanical, numerical,
with locks, and you get the digital
ones. I can crack them all.
Digital safes are the easiest
to open.
You take some powder and dust them
and you can see the fingerprints
and you know everything.
Numerical ones are the hardest.
You have to use your hearing,
you have to have very good hearing
and a good memory.
This is very difficult.
But in this case we couldn't open it.
We tried everything.
We made phone calls.
I spoke to another safe expert.
But we gave up that night.
You can't sleep.
You can't sleep, for God's sake.
We're all in this together,
we're all friends
but with this kind of loot, your
brain works on different frequency.
You could have two or three million
and you don't know what will happen.
I don't know. Money is money,
you can't separate.
If one of us is missing,
he could take it all.
WOMAN: I was in the flat on my own.
I was already worrying
why they were not back yet.
They didn't call,
no phone calls at all
because that was the arrangement.
I didn't know what was happening,
all kinds of thoughts were going
through my head.
I would often cry
and I wanted to get out of the flat
but I was told not to do that.
Sometimes I wouldn't even
care about the money.
I waited for HIM, not the loot.
We had to wait for the morning to
buy additional tools that we needed.
We bought two more crowbars, one big,
one small, we took another
pickaxe and we thought we could do
something with burning gas.
And when we had the tools,
we went back to the lake.
We were guarding the van outside
and inside we could speak
and pick until finished.
It took over an hour
to open the safe.
When you open a safe
and you see it's a full, full safe...
There's the feeling, it's like,
a feeling you might faint any moment.
I love that!
And in this safe there was plenty
of stuff. There was really a lot.
We found six bags
that we call rolls.
It was three stones,
three bags of stones, two with
and one with watches. Er...
In the newspapers,
when it came about the robbery,
it said the value three million.
And if I can only say what else
we found, inside of the safe!
We found a fake penis!
You say dildo, no?
And I bet you they didn't declare
that to the police!
What do they do with the jewels?
We don't know exactly.
What we know, the jewels are going
very fast out of the country
to where they committed the robbery.
The day after,
the jewels are disappeared.
We think they are going in Italy
or in Montenegro or Serbia
and after, it is sold.
So, what do you do
with the diamonds?
We bring the stones over here
to our contact in Belgrade
but he doesn't have a market
in the former Yugoslavia.
He has to sell abroad
but maybe, I don't know, Antwerp?
We would do this job ourselves
but it's very risky abroad
because you make an offer,
you give it to the guy,
they take it and it's a set-up
and bang. You're killed.
No, we stay in the Balkans.
What do you do, then,
do you hide it, do you swallow it?
They had a false passport and
they were about to cross the border
very easily, by plane, by car,
or by train and for them
it was difficult to follow them and
to know what they are going to do.
When they go back to the country,
there was like a protection,
they knew nobody is going to come
to Montenegro or to Serbia to
pick them there,
even if you have an arrest warrant,
because some of them
were involved with the politicians
and so it was very difficult,
so they knew that as soon as
I have made my robbery,
I go back to the country -
there I'm protected.
That's right, in the Balkans
they speak of the pinks
like Robin Hood.
But that's not reality.
Normally, about the guys we know,
the money they use or they have
they're not going to give that
for the Red Cross or...
an association in Montenegro.
You have some who will reinvest
some money in drugs,
some who put the money in real estate
and some just use the money
for fun.
Then the pink starts changing.
He starts gambling, going out
all the time, the money that we had,
we start to rapidly spend it more
and more.
And then we start arguing.
I wanted to somehow attract him
to live a different kind of life.
I thought perhaps he needs only one
more job and he would change.
It would change his life.
But I saw that he wouldn't
change for anything or anybody.
He said he wanted me to continue
my life and that he didn't know
if his life would ever change.
Then I gave up on him.
and I'm from Bosnia-Herzegovina.
I don't consider myself as one
of Pink Panthers but I am connected.
In 1996,
I joined the special operation unit
because I knew that the contacts
in the Serbian security service
would allow me
job benefits in the future.
My first criminal job in Bosnia
was importing stolen cars
from Europe.
The second job was human
trafficking for prostitution,
from Ukraine and Moldova.
So, it is only the third phase that
we do drugs, cocaine and diamonds.
Nothing in diamonds could be done
outside the Serb secret service.
America asked the United Nations
to prevent diamond smuggling
because this war in Sierra Leone
was financed by diamond trade.
The Americans requested every diamond
sold in Sierra Leone
had to have a certificate
about its origin and everything,
so we actually, my group and myself,
learned how to make certificates and
how to make clean illegal diamonds
that are ready for the market.
The first contract with
Pink Panthers was when I started
the diamond business in Antwerp.
They would bring diamonds to me
and my team would process it,
forging diamond certificates
and inputting real information
from Sierra Leone that was
mined in this and that place
and it has original certificates.
The entire genesis, America asked
the United Nations to establish.
The diamonds are cut, reshaped,
but they get smaller.
If it was 30 carats, it is now 15.
They are clean in every
sense of the word.
It's not possible to prove
they are not clean.
Our biggest clients are Americans.
I will say, although I've never been
to America, my diamonds
are on the hands of the brides.
I receive information, Al-Qaeda
also purchase diamonds.
Diamonds have a good exchange value
because they don't leave
electronic trace.
Every transaction over 15,000 euros
or dollars is controlled.
But who controls diamonds? Nobody.
You can come out with a tiny
bag full of diamonds
and you can buy a bowl
filled with cocaine.
The real...
the first step on the real work
on the Pink Panthers is 2007,
when Monaco pushed Interpol
to make a project work...
to create this
Project Pink Panther.
And the real job, for me,
began at this time.
Because at this time, we began
to say, "OK, they are linked,
"they are reselling.
"A lot of these teams are linked
and working in all Europe.
"And we have to do this project
"so we can put all the information
If we take one example, this guy,
we see that he
is connected to this guy
because they were arrested
together, in 2004.
And at the same time,
he is connected with this guy
because they have done
a robbery together.
Because we know that there are,
between some groups,
like, a small competition -
who is going to make
the biggest robbery.
And we know that there are
some targets in the world
and the first one who is going
to make that will take...
a little bit, like,
take the lead on the other teams.
Well, the night of the incident,
it was just a regular night out,
hanging out with some friends.
And I get a call
from a friend of mine
who informs me that there's
a big robbery going on at Wafi.
She tells me that
her husband's there
and he's just sent her,
on BlackBerry,
a video shot of what's happening.
I immediately headed out to Wafi
and I just saw police
cordoning off the area around it.
I was standing at the entrance
and started clipping pictures
and trying to see what's going on
and what's happened.
Out comes the door -
the Dubai police chief.
The first words that have come
out of his mouth that night was,
"These were definitely not Arabs.
"This was too well-organised."
So what happened?
You went straight to the mall?
Yes, I went straight and I meet
my commanders, also, in the area.
And we closed the places
and we find some glass
is on the ground
and the evidence from
all the things.
And we must be careful about the
place and that's what we're doing.
The cars have come out of
this main doorway,
that's right behind us,
drove straight through
onto this road
which connects them
to the outside of the mall
and into the highway,
where we're going to retrace
the route that they've taken,
right now.
From this point onwards,
to the highway,
there are no traffic lights.
So the guys had more or less
clear access to the roads.
So the thieves dumped the cars,
set fire to them,
jumped into their getaway car
and now they have disappeared.
The whole thing would have possibly
taken them about ten minutes.
Next day morning, early morning,
the two cars were found abandoned
and burnt.
One of them more than the other.
all the window of the cars.
When he closed the window, there
is no oxygen for the fire inside
and then we find all
the evidence inside this car.
We find the gloves,
we find some dress,
we find the tanks who have used
the chemicals to burn the cars.
Immediately, we know this
is organised
from Pink Panther organised crimes.
This is what I feel immediately,
when I go back to see the CCTV
At that time, every single Serbian
who has had a record
was picked up and questioned.
So how many people did you have
working on the job? Anything.
We don't get a limit for that.
It depended about
what the kind of work
they will be doing is.
Over the next three, four days,
it just went frantic.
They kept on feeding
information to the Interpol,
for the international police force
to try to get these guys.
It's not easy for anyone
to do any crime
and not leave any evidence.
They left evidence, that helped us.
Because this is forensics
and that's the beauty of DNA.
We got information from Interpol
about the DNA.
So we were working.
And we knew that they rented a car.
But this car,
nobody knows where this car is.
Then we found the car.
We decide that we will not
take the car.
We will watch it.
And we find one guy -
they try to open the car
and we catch him,
because that guy,
they sent to take the jewels
out of the country.
We find the jewellery
inside this car.
Police, when the arrests were made,
called in a huge press conference.
All the media was there,
laid out the jewellery
in front of everybody and said,
"We've caught them,
we've nabbed them.
"We're done."
And who were the others, then?
You had a picture of the girl.
But she's not in prison? No.
She's in Serbia, so maybe
she cannot be arrested in Serbia.
I hope she'll be arrested in Serbia.
But I know her.
We tried to discuss this
with Interpol.
We tried to do so.
So if a member of the Pink Panther
gang watches my film,
what is your message?
To be far from our area.
Don't try to play with us,
because we are not playing.
They had a great period
between 2000 and 2006.
And the problem for them,
it is that the connection
between the different police
in Europe is a problem for them.
We can exchange information
very easily.
And on top of that,
with Serbia and Montenegro now,
we have a good connection
and they are cooperating
with the Western police in Europe.
So for them, it's going to be harder
to commit these robberies in Europe.
And that's what Interpol said -
it's one of the first time
they have such a project
which gives so much information
and who bring us
to so many arrests.
Since 2007,
you have nearly 50 people
who were arrested across Europe.
Is it still safe here?
Oh, no, no, no.
Montenegro isn't a safe haven
any more.
Montenegro has started
to extradite people
because they want to join
the European Union.
So it's not any more
about doing it and escaping.
You have to protect yourself here
as much as there.
But, you know,
now we lead much more simple lives.
Things slowed down and, you know...
Now it's becoming more difficult
and more dangerous,
because the police know
all the tricks.
It would be very nice
to feel secure,
to be in your home - safe.
And this is the consequence
of this job - paranoia.
You see, now I walk down the street
and my head goes like...
Like a rear view mirror, you know?
Am I being followed?
Does anybody see me?
Anybody follow me?
The habit lingers.
Even now, in my pocket,
I have pills - had pills -
just in case.
But crisis throws you back in it.
You are used to a lot of money,
lots of fun.
You have a reputation -
easy money spent, easy money earned.
It burns quickly,
so when you're left with no money,
you don't know how to do
another job.
We have always old teams who work,
who try to make new teams,
and at the same time,
we have brand-new teams.
We have a lot of guys
working in all Europe.
For me, they're more violent.
Already, their entrance
in the jeweller's
is not so professional
and there could be mistakes inside,
and that could be
more dangerous for us,
because the attitude of the bad guys
could bring us to a tragic end.
Look, I must warn you something -
you cannot say
the Pink Panthers' era is over,
because you don't know
what will happen next.
It is maybe just the end
of one generation.
But what is going on with
the other teams from other countries
that want to do the same?
Maybe we are just witnessing
the development.
I went back to Dimitrovgrad.
Bad. Very bad.
I was physically
and mentally shaken,
and after all that luxury,
I was completely broken down.
I was depressed.
But I realised that I have
to carry on with my life.
I got married to a man
who gave me hope.
He was completely legal.
He wasn't corrupt,
he wasn't criminal.
But I finally started
a new life with him.
I started a family.
In my heart, I remain what I was.
Milan is the man I love.
But when kids come,
you can't choose.
You have one path.
You cannot continue
on criminal path.
My mother was very pious
and with her,
I would sometimes pray to God
before bedtime.
But also in those moments
of hardship,
I would often go to church
to light a candle,
to cry and to think about things.
And do you still believe in God?
Yes, yes, of course.
And I teach my children. Of course.
We have to ask for His forgiveness.
And all these people
who are criminals, believe me,
they believe in God
more than regular people.
We have to pray a lot more
for His forgiveness.
God is merciful.
And maybe He will.