Apple store in Paris raided by armed robbers on New Year’s Eve, cops apparently distracted by celebrations elsewhere

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Armed robbers raided an Apple store in Paris’s Opera district on New Year’s Eve, making off with goods worth around a million euros ($1.32 million) in the process.

It seems the criminals chose their moment carefully, mindful of the fact that the police had their attention focused on the nearby Champs-Elysées where thousands were enjoying New Year celebrations.

Carrying handguns, around four or five masked raiders entered the store at about 9pm, three hours after it had closed for business. While some reports suggest they overpowered a security guard, others say it was a janitor who was targeted as he was leaving the store for the night.

The gang reportedly went for goods in the stock room rather than items on display, taking around 40 minutes to load up a waiting a truck. Items including iPhones, iMacs, iPads and laptops were taken in the raid.

“They prepared their coup pretty well,” Christophe Crépin of the French police Unsa told the media, adding that as “the essential bulk of police forces were mobilized to patrol the Champs-Elysées, the thieves clearly profited from the opportunity to make their move.”

Initial reports suggest goods worth a million euros were taken, though Paris police said the exact figure won’t be known until a full inventory has been taken. According to the Wall Street Journal, the New Year’s Eve crime marks the first time a major robbery of this nature has taken place at an Apple store in France.