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Chilean crime syndicate that ‘stole $1.2million worth of luxury items is brought down by police

Chilean crime syndicate that ‘stole $1.2million worth of luxury items from more than 80 homes in Sydney’s most exclusive neighbourhoods’ is brought down by police

  • Crime syndicate allegedly stole $1.2 million dollars worth of goods 
  • The operation was uncovered after 80 homes were broken into across Sydney
  • Eight Chilean people were charged after they were involved in the crime spree
  • Police allege they broke into homes and shops and sent items back home 

A Chilean crime syndicate that allegedly stole more than a million dollars worth of luxury items and sent them overseas has been brought down by police.

The complex operation was uncovered after more than 80 homes were broken into across Sydney during September and October.

Authorities charged eight people allegedly involved in the organised theft syndicate and are using it as a warning for people to properly secure their homes and cars during the holiday season.  

A Chilean crime syndicate that allegedly stole more than a million dollars worth of luxury items and sent them overseas has been brought down by police

The complex operation was uncovered after more than 80 homes were broken into across Sydney during September and October

Police allege the five men and three women broke into homes in Vaucluse, Rose Bay, Five Dock and Castle Hill and took $1.2 million worth of jewellery, cash and luxury clothing.

The Chilean tourists and students also allegedly stole luxury items from designer stores across Melbourne and Sydney.

The stolen items were then sent back to their home country or sold for cash that was then transferred overseas.

One of the individuals includes 19-year-old Chilean Anastassia Saavedra Urzua (pictured), who was sentenced to 30-days behind bars after pleading guilty

One of the individuals includes 19-year-old Chilean Anastassia Saavedra Urzua (pictured), who was sentenced to 30-days behind bars after pleading guilty

In November, detectives with the NSW Crime Command’s Robbery and Serious Crimes Squad established Strike Force Merengue and began to investigate the continuous break-ins.

Inquiries lead to a series of arrests in November and December, with two individuals arrested at Sydney International Airport. 

Their charges included making a false statement to an officer for purposes of Migration Act, aggravated break and enter, and knowingly dealing with proceeds of a crime.

Three more people were arrested at a unit in Sydney Olympic park and were charged with aggravated break and entering a dwelling in company with intent to steal. 

Another two suspects believed to be involved in the complex operation were arrested in Melbourne in early December after a week-long crime spree at shopping centres in Chadstone, Ringwood, Knox and Doncaster.

The Chilean tourists and students also allegedly stole luxury items from designer stores across Melbourne and Sydney

Police allege the five men and three women broke into homes in Vaucluse, Rose Bay, Five Dock and Castle Hill and stoke $1.2 million worth of jewellery, cash and luxury clothing 

Police allege the five men and three women broke into homes in Vaucluse, Rose Bay, Five Dock and Castle Hill and stoke $1.2 million worth of jewellery, cash and luxury clothing 

More than 600 sporting goods were stolen from Rebel Sport, 36 purses and bags from TK Maxx and other items worth more than $27,000, The Sydney Morning Herald reported. 

One of the individuals includes 19-year-old Chilean Anastassia Saavedra Urzua, who was sentenced to 30-days behind bars after pleading guilty in Melbourne Magistrates Court.

She is also believed to have been involved in a group that stole Victoria’s Secret items from a mall in California. 

After an extensive investigation, a 41-year-old woman was arrested at a home in Leppington on December 18 and charged with seven offences, including two counts of shoplifting and receive property from serious indictable offence.

In November, detectives with the NSW Crime Command's Robbery and Serious Crimes Squad established Strike Force Merengue and began to investigate the continuous break-ins

In November, detectives with the NSW Crime Command’s Robbery and Serious Crimes Squad established Strike Force Merengue and began to investigate the continuous break-ins

Strike force investigators have been working together with Chilean authorities in an attempt to retrieve the packages with stolen goods.

More than 30 international money transfers were made to unknown recipients in Santiago, Chile of amounts adding up to $75,000. 

‘This has been a sophisticated and meticulous investigation; spanning not just across Australia but across the Pacific Ocean,’ Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty said.

‘We want to hear from anyone who may have information that can assist us in dismantling this syndicate.’

He also reminded the community to properly secure their homes and cars during the holiday season, and have someone check on the property if it’s left empty. 

Strike force investigators have been working together with Chilean authorities in an attempt to retrieve the packages with stolen goods (pictured)

Strike force investigators have been working together with Chilean authorities in an attempt to retrieve the packages with stolen goods (pictured)

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