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In biggest-ever gold heist in Canada’s history, Air Canada employee Parmpal Sandhu held; cops dub it ‘Netflix worthy’


Apr 18, 2024 10:27 AM IST

In what has been dubbed as Canada’s biggest-ever gold robbery, 6 people have been arrested, including an Air Canada staffer. Cops dubbed plot ‘Netflix worthy’

Just a year ago, the entire world saw alarming headlines in global agencies’ tickers revealing the brazen theft of millions of dollars worth of gold bars along with currency. The plan that was revealed thereafter, loooked as if it came out of a Netflix show, that is how well-orchestrated it was. And notably, there were no arrests. Till now.

Peel Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah reveals that the investigation into the theft of gold from Toronto’s Pearson International airport a year ago, has finally led to arrests being made.(AP)
Peel Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah reveals that the investigation into the theft of gold from Toronto’s Pearson International airport a year ago, has finally led to arrests being made.(AP)

Finally, after months of investigation into the audacious theft of over $16 million worth of gold and currency, authorities have revealed that there are 9 suspects in all and that they have arrested as many as 6. It was a joint effort between Canadian and US authorities that led to this stage of the investigation. Police also revealed that three more are still at large.

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A 54-year-old man named Parmpal Sidhu, an Air Canada employee was arrested and charged with theft, it has been revealed. And, the search is on for Simran Preet Panesar, 31, too but he is no longer with the airline.

Peel Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah put things in perspective about the nature of the gold robbery by saying, “This story is a sensational one and one which, probably, we jokingly say, belongs in a Netflix series”.

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How they did it

The gold heist was orchestrated by a group that included two Air Canada employees and it involved the manipulation of an airway bill. This fraudulent act facilitated the theft of a substantial cargo shipment from Switzerland.

The loss included a whopping 6,600 gold bars, weighing a total of 400 kg (882 pounds), alongside over $2 mn in foreign currency. The daring robbery was staged in an Air Canada cargo facility within the Toronto Pearson International Airport.

Authorities have revealed that all 9 are facing as many as 19 charges in total.

The arrests

Five of these suspects were caught in Canada, but were released on bail. One, who is a resident of Brampton, Ontario, was arrested in Pennsylvania, US, and since he had a gun in his possession, he is still under arrest in the US.

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Air Canada’s response

The airline has suspended its cargo division employee implicated in the theft. Another had already quit the company.

How the robbers were caught

Investigators from Peel Regional Police collaborated with the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives that led to the recovery of one kg of gold and Some $400,000 in currency.

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Authorities suspect that the stolen gold was melted down to conceal its origins, with the profits subsequently utilized to finance the acquisition of firearms as many as 65 firearms were believed to have been confiscated.


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