10 Biggest Bank Robberies of All Time

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Robbing a bank is not as easy as seen in movies. It takes long term planning, great techniques and  willing to be never working again.Granted, it’s the more extreme method. And it’s successful only as long as you don’t get caught. But many robbers do find themselves behind bars eventually. These thoughtful and daring bank robberies will give you shivers. Here is a list of 10 of the world’s biggest bank robberies.

10 –British Bank of The Middle East’s Robbery

Stolen: £25 million(£100 million today)

British Bank of The Middle East

Photo credit:Daily Mail

In January 1976, eight armed men stole gold worth £25 million from the British Bank of the Middle East in Beirut.In the heat of Lebanon’s civil war, a group associated with the Palestinian Liberation Organization blasted through the bank’s walls through a church next door and hired a crack team of locksmiths to bust open the vault.The robbers made off with £25 million in cash, stocks, gold bars, jewels and other valuables. None of the loot was recovered and no one was arrested.

9 – Dar Es Salaam Bank Heist

Stolen: $282 million

dar es salaam bank heist

Photo credit:Red news wire

On July 11, 2007, three thieves dressed as bank guards stole $282 million from the Dar Es Salaam Bank in Baghdad. While many of the details related to this major robbery of mostly American cash remain shrouded in mystery, the Iraqi Interior Minister did reveal that the whole heist was engineered by a pair of guards who worked for the bank and were allegedly connected to militias roaming the region back in 2007.

8 –Brink’s-MAT Robbery

Stolen: £26 million ( £86 million today)

Brink's-MAT Robbery

Photo credit:Mirror

The Brink’s-Mat robbery occurred early on 26 November 1983 when six robbers broke into the Brink’s-Mat warehouse at Heathrow Airport with help from a security guard who was in on the job.The robbers thought that they were going to steal £3.2 million in cash, Untill they discovered an additional three tons of gold and diamonds.Much of the three tonnes of stolen gold has never been recovered and the other four robbers were never convicted.

7 –The Banco Central burglary

Stolen: $71 million

The Banco Central burglary

Photo credit:Brazzil

On Saturday, August 6, 2005, a gang of burglars tunneled into the bank and removed five containers of 50-real notes, with an estimated value of 71.6 million USD and weighing about 3.5 tons. The gang behind this enormous heist spent three months digging a 256-foot tunnel to a position beneath the bank. The burglars managed to evade or disable the bank’s internal alarms and sensors, and the burglary remained undiscovered until the bank opened for business the following Monday.

6 – The Knightsbridge Vault Robbery

Stolen: £62 million( £160 million today)

The Knightsbridge Vault

Photo credit:BBC

The Knightsbridge Security Deposit robbery took place on 12 July 1987 in Cheval Place, Knightsbridge, England. The robbery was led by Valerio Viccei , a lawyer’s son who arrived in London in 1986 from his native Italy.After entering the bank during business hours under the guise of opening a safety deposit box, he and his armed accomplice “subdued” the manager and security guards, freeing them up to let in more accomplices to help bust open as much of the vault as possible. Eventually, they walked out with at least £62 million in cash, jewelry, and other valuables. On 19 April 2000, during day release from prison, a gunfight broke out between Viccei, an accomplice, and the police, resulting in the Viccei’s death.

5 –The Securitas depot robbery

Stolen: $83 million

The Securitas depot

Photo credit:Kentlive

The Securitas depot robbery was the largest cash robbery in British history. After posing as police and kidnapping both the Securitas branch manager and his family, the heavily armed gang of thieves brought him to the depot where they then bound his 14 employees and forced him to open the cash cages. The crew stole about $83 million. Despite their clever disguises, some of the robbers were caught, and the makeup artist who designed the masks became a key witness in the case.

4 – The United California bank heist

Stolen: $30 million($140 million today)

The United California bank

Photo credit:Fact Republic

In 1972, the United California Bank was attacked by seven men headed by Amil Dinsio along with his brothers, friends and cousins. They rented a house near the bank and planned the robbery. The crew dynamited their way into the vault, stole $30 million worth of cash and valuables, and fled after meticulously scrubbing down the town house.The crew was caught and apprehended because they operated the same way and robbed a bank in Ohio months later that leads the police to the gang’s headquarters.

3 – Russian hackers

Stolen: £650 million

Russian hackers

Photo credit:csmonitor

Between 2014-2016, a ring of Russian computer hackers stole an estimated £650 million from banks all over the world. Using malware and phishing to hack banks’ systems, they studied the operations and routines of the banks, even watching through webcams and CCTV systems, then transferred money through fake accounts. They even programmed ATMs to dispense cash at specific times. Never taking more than £80 million from a single target, the gang robbed as many as 100 banks in 30 countries and remain at large to this day.

2 –Central Bank of Iraq

Stolen: $920million

Central Bank of Iraq

Photo credit:Reddit

This is by far the biggest bank robbery in the world though it doesn’t look much like a heist.The mastermind was none other than Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. One day before the Iraq War began in 2003, he sent three large trucks to the Central Bank. He also sent his son Qusay with a handwritten note asking to withdraw $920 million to keep it from enemy hands. The money was loaded into vans and driven away. And was later on found hidden and tucked inside the walls of one of Hussein’s palace. Almost half of the stolen money was recovered by US forces but the rest remain unrecovered.

1 – The Reichsbank Robbery

Stolen: $3 Billion

The Reichsbank Robbery

Photo credit:eskify

Reichsbank was the central bank of Germany from 1876 until 1945. The bank benefited by the theft of the property of numerous governments invaded by the Germans. The robbery happened in Germany during the culmination of the 2nd World War. Although majority of the stash is not cold cash, but in fact, a foreign bond that amounts to triple its value to today’s valuation. This heist holds the Guinness World Record for the biggest robbery in the world amounting to $3 billion in stolen assets.

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