PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A multi-million dollar jewelry burglary ring is cracked in the Delaware Valley as investigators are trying to recover all the jewels stolen from victims, including an NBA star player.
CBS 3 watched as a team of investigators sorted through hundreds of pieces of jewelry inside V Jewelers in the 700 block of Sansom Street.
The scope of a multi-million dollar burglary ring that police say had its base at a store on Jewelers’ Row, stretched across the Delaware Valley.
Court documents showed four burglars cuffed and charged back in the summer zeroed-in on lavish homes.
Police said they would run surveillance on their victims and go to extremes to avoid tripping sophisticated security systems.
The Main Line home of Toronto Raptors’ Kyle Lowry was hit, police sources said.
Responding to an email from CBS3, a spokesman for the Raptors said Lowry, a former Villanova basketball standout, politely declined comment for this story.
Detectives said the connection to Jewelers Row was through a man identified as Wasim Shazad, owner and operator of V Jewelers.
Police said the store amounted to a front, where millions of dollars of stolen jewelry was moved, resold or melted down. Shazad is described in court papers as “the fence” of the criminal organization. Each defendant is charged with a slew of felony counts, including a corrupt organizations charge.
Nobody answered at Shazad’s East Norriton home. A message left for his attorney, Jeffrey Sigman, was not returned.
People across the area fell victim in the years-long burglary ring. Of the largest thefts, some $600,00 was taken from a home in Kennett Square. A half-million in jewelry was swiped from from a house in Lower Merion as $239,000 was taken from a residence in New Castle County. Another home in Lower Merion was nailed for $237,000. Police have linked a total of 15 burglaries in the case. That number is expected to rise.
Shazad posted $250,000 bail, and was released from the Montgomery County jail. His four alleged accomplices remain locked up pending a preliminary hearing.