x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Man swallows Dh50,000 diamond in Sri Lanka theft attempt

A Chinese visitor to Sri Lanka's biggest gem and jewellery exhibition is arrested for attempted theft, police say.

Sri Lankan authorities escort a Chinese national to the police station after he was caught swallowing at Dh50,000 diamond.
Sri Lankan authorities escort a Chinese national to the police station after he was caught swallowing at Dh50,000 diamond.

COLOMBO // A Chinese visitor to Sri Lanka's biggest gem and jewellery exhibition was arrested for attempted theft after swallowing a diamond worth about Dh50,000, police said.

Chou Wan, 32, had asked the stall owner for a close inspection of the diamond on the opening day of Facets Sri Lanka, an annual exhibition in the capital Colombo.

"He had taken the diamond out of a display cabinet and appeared to be appraising it and suddenly put it in his mouth," a police officer at the scene who declined to be named said.

"The owner saw this and alerted us," he said, adding that the man was arrested and taken to Colombo National Hospital to be given laxatives.

Police said the stall owner valued the missing diamond at 1.8 million rupees (Dh50,000).

Sri Lanka does not mine diamonds but it has a large gem and jewellery industry and is famed for its blue sapphires.