Anyone who has seen Ocean’s 11 is familiar with classic heist formula. Find some accomplices, case the joint, plan a clever disguise, and walk away from the target with a lifetime’s worth of money in tow and no one else the wiser.
Fact and fiction seemed to blur when a Hollywood worthy burglary went unsolved in 1990, the thieves making off with $500 million in masterpieces stolen from the Isabella Steward Gardner Museum in Boston. For 25 years the case went unsolved, until now that is.
Two years ago, FBI investigators claimed that they were aware of the identity of the robbers, but refused to provide any additional details on the matter. No arrests were made, and no one was tried for the case, perplexing members of the press who followed the case for several years. However, as of this Thursday, the FBI has finally announced why no action was taken against the perpetrators.
The suspects, who continue to remain unnamed, are dead according to the FBI. Alongside this stunning announcement, the FBI revealed previously unreleased security footage of the robbery. The footage showed two men who, over several days, practiced entering the museum through a secure rear door by posing as police officers. They were later able to execute their robbery and subdue the museum’s security guards thanks to this practice. However, there is no footage of the actual night of the robbery. The robbers took that with them as they made their escape.
With the thieves dead, the FBI has now refocused its operation entirely around the recovery of the stolen art pieces, which included works by Manet, Degas, and Vermeer, as well as the Rembrandt Masterpiece, “Storm on the Sea of Galilee.” The museum is currently offering a $5 million reward for any information that might lead to the recovery of the stolen items in good condition.