Belgian diamond traffickers jailed for two years

5th December 2008, Comments 0 comments

The stones were worth 500 million euros.

BRUSSELS - A Belgian court sentenced Thursday two men to two years in prison for running a ring to smuggle half a billion euros in gems in the stomachs of human "mules".

The court in Antwerp found that the 60-year-old man and his son, 34, organised some 671 secret trips out of the city - Belgium's diamond capital - between 2001 and 2004.

The stones, with a total estimated value of 500 million euros (640 million dollars), were put into condoms and swallowed by nine "courriers" who took them to Canada, China, Israel, Singapore and Thailand.

The diamond dealers for whom the trips were organised were never identified.

The two men were fined 1.3 million euros.


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