A 5.4-carat diamond worth $53,000 (₹34 lakh), that was stolen from an exhibitor’s booth at the recently-ended India International Jewellery Show (IIJS), was recovered from two Chinese nationals who were arrested at Mumbai airport on Monday evening.
The two, Jiang Changquing, 47, and Deng Xiaobo, 45, had spent two hours at the booth of P. Kirtilal & Co. and, under the pretext of examining the diamond, had replaced it with a fake by sleight of hand.
The exhibitors discovered the switch only after the two had left the IIJS venue. They were identified through video footage from security cameras. Security personnel notified their colleagues at Mumbai airport and the two were found and apprehended just minutes before they boarded a flight to Hong Kong and Osaka via Delhi.
The pair had no checked-in luggage and only carried two shaving-kit-sized bags. Despite searching them and x-raying the bags, the diamond was not found initially. It was later discovered inside a very small, 5 millilitre shampoo bottle.