BRUSSELS (CBS) - Police in Belgium are investigating one of the biggest diamond heists in recent memory. The robbers snatched millions of dollars in diamonds from a plane getting ready to take off.
Workers are beefing up security by placing concrete barriers around the fence at Brussels International airport after a massive diamond heist.
Investigators say eight masked gunmen, dressed like police officers, broke through the fence Monday night and drove two cars onto the tarmac. The men snatched an estimated $50 million worth of diamonds from the cargo hold of a plane scheduled to fly to Switzerland. Brussels Airport spokesman Jan Van der Cruysse says, "The operation at the airport has taken exactly three minutes. So this was a very quick hit and run, very well organized.
Prosecutors say the suspects' cars had flashing blue lights. They held the pilot, co-pilot and other airport workers at gun point. Van der Cruysse says, "These people were indeed very well aware of what they were doing, what they were looking for."
Police found a burnt-out car near the airport and say it was probably used in the heist. The Swiss plane was carrying passengers, but authorities say those on board could not see what was happening underneath near the cargo area.
Airport officials say they are trying to figure out how such a major security breach could happen and that they plan to find those responsible.