courts

Court dismisses appeals after Pink Panther gang member’s suicide

Serbian accused in the Dh14.74m Wafi heist case was found dead in prison cell on January 2

16:23 March 16, 2017

Dubai: The appeals in the case against the fourth member of the infamous Pink Panther gang which committed the Dh14.74-million jewellery heist at Wafi City in 2007 have been dismissed following his death.

In November last year, the Dubai Court of First Instance jailed 35-year-old Serbian gang member Borko Ilincic for 10 years for his involvement in the April 2007 armed robbery at Graf jewellery store during which the thieves had used two stolen cars.

In January, the convict appealed his primary court judgement before the Dubai Appeal Court and was seeking his acquittal.

Prosecutors had also appealed the primary ruling and sought to stiffen his punishment.

Ilincic missed two hearings before the appellate court before it was discovered that he had committed suicide inside his prison cell.

Presiding judge Saeed Salem Bin Sarm dismissed the criminal case and the appeals lodged by the prosecutors and the convict in view of his demise. A Serbian Embassy spokesperson told Gulf News earlier that Ilincic had committed suicide and was found dead inside his prison cell on January 2 this year.

Court records showed that Ilincic had appealed his 10-year imprisonment and was seeking his acquittal. He had pleaded not guilty before the primary court.

According to the primary ruling, the court convicted the defendant of aiding and abetting a number of unidentified robbers [some of whom have been tried and others remain at large] who stole two cars, drove into Wafi City around 10pm and brought down the jewellery shop’s front glass by crashing a car into it.

The robbers wore masks and used toy guns to terrorise shop attendants, according to court records, before they smashed the display cases with iron tools, snatched the contents and fled with jewellery worth Dh14.7 million.

Ilincic was also convicted of forging a European passport that he used to enter the UAE for the heist and then exited using the same travel document.