[IN VIDEO] Spectacular flight at the Maastricht art and antique fair

[EN VIDÉO] Spectacular theft at the art and antique fair of Maastricht

MISE À DAY

Armed robbers broke into TEFAF, the art and antiques fair in Maastricht (Netherlands), one of the largest in the world, in broad daylight on Tuesday, where a video shows the suspects smashing through a shop window.

A spectacular video circulated on social media shows four men in smart clothes, caps and glasses smashing through a window display at TEFAF (The European Fine Art Fair) in Maastricht, in the south-west of the country. Two of the men brandished what looked like pistols in the face of a man who tried to intervene, armed with a large glass vase full of flowers.

Police say they have arrested two people and seek others, without providing an amount of damage for the moment.

“The police are investigating a possible armed robbery at TEFAF in Maastricht. Four suspects are believed to be involved. They are wanted by many units,” police in the Dutch province of Limburg wrote on Twitter.

Roads near the fair were cut off, as well as a major road tunnel, during the hunt thieves.

According to Dutch media, the shop window targeted by the burglars contained products from a London jeweler.

TEFAF is one of the largest art and antique fairs on the planet and typically attracts tens of thousands of visitors. It has been around for over 30 years and was making a comeback this year, after a hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Images circulating on social media showed the smashed display at the fair.

One visitor, Jos Stassen, said he came to the event on Tuesday hoping to view artwork in peace.

“Peaky Blinders”

“Normally, it's very calm (…) and serene, but suddenly I heard a lot of noise, I turned and suddenly I saw these men”, he told the NOS public channel. “One started banging (on the window) and the others were keeping people away, scaring everyone. I also saw a weapon. It went really fast and it lasted a very short time, but I'm still shaking a little.”

The phrase 'Peaky Blinders' has gone viral on Dutch social media, because the caps carried by the thieves resembled those of the eponymous British crime gang, made famous by a series bearing the same name.

This is not the first time that TEFAF has been targeted by criminals.

In 2011, a diamond and a diamond-encrusted necklace worth 860,000 euros were stolen, again from a jeweler from London.