Justice has at last caught up with a member of the notorious Pink Panthers, an amorphous group of hardened criminals from the former Yugoslavia.
The 34-year-old Serbian is most notorious for being part of a gang that drove two stolen Audi cars into the Graff storefront in the Wafi Centre in Dubai in 2007. The heist netted almost €4 million in watches and diamonds. The whole episode lasted less than a minute.
While at a meeting in Germany, Dubai Police presented DNA traces collected from the raid. This was followed by a bizarre episode in Monaco in 2008 during which the gangster was knocked down while casing a jewellery store in Monte-Carlo.
A traffic police detective, who went to the hospital to check on his recovery, recognised the suspect and alerted authorities. He was referred to Switzerland and later returned to Monaco before being deported to Serbia. Investigations revealed that he fled to Spain.
Spanish authorities arrested him on February 11, 2014, in the city of Alcala de Henares and extradited him to the UAE on October 14, 2015.
This week he was sentenced to 10 years in jail for his part in the Dubai thefts. The Criminal Court ordered his deportation after the jail term.