'Everybody knows Kim Kardashian is an easy target': Former Pink Panther blames star for her OWN robbery
- Former 'Pink Panther' member blamed Kim Kardashian for her own theft
- He said she 'helped the bandits... because she advertises what she has'
- Palve Stanimirovic said the robbers will have had a network of informers
- He said waiters and doormen tipped off thieves about Kim's whereabouts
- Suspected gang of five will have made around £230,000 each, he claims
A former criminal mastermind and Pink Panthers member has blamed Kim Kardashian for her own £8.5million robbery in Paris.
Palve 'Punch' Stanimirovic, once a member of the 'gentleman thieves' gang responsible for some of the most audacious heists in history, said the star was an 'easy target' for Eastern European criminals.
He said Croatian and Serbian waiters and doormen will have waited until Kardashian, 35, was alone and vulnerable before tipping off the thieves who tied her up and stole her £3.5m engagement ring.
The mother-of-two was targeted by 'movie-like' gangsters from the former Yugoslavia, Albania, Croatia, Montenegro and Serbia, who survive for several years on the spoils of their heists before planning another high-risk high-reward crime, he added.
Highly trained, disciplined and intelligent, the robbers live lives of luxury. But he claims they will only make around £230,000 each from the Kardashian job because of the difficulties involved with selling such high-profile gems.
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Former Pink Panthers member Palve 'Punch' Stanimirovic (pictured) has blamed Kim Kardashian for her own £8.5million robbery in Paris
Stainimoriv said a network of Croatian and Serbian waiters and doormen will have tipped off the thieves when Kardashian (pictured) was alone and vulnerable in her hotel room
Although the criminals are daring and ruthless they act like 'Samurai', only stealing 'stuff that is insured' and never using violence against their victims, he said.
Master safe-cracker Stanimirovic was the youngest and highest-ranking member of the Yugoslavs Albanians Croatians and Serbians (YACS) crime gang, a prominent sub-division of the Pink Panthers.
Speaking to the Daily Beast, he said: 'Everybody knows that Kim Kardashian is an easy target. She's by herself and you know who the people are that work in the service industry in Paris and all over Europe.
'These are the Croatians and Serbians. These are the waiters, door men, and cleaning people. They work in the modelling industry. And they have friends that have friends that have friends.
'It's so easy to pick up a phone and say, "Hey, Kim Kardashian is here in room so-and-so".
'You know how fast they can set this up? They know the area. They know the hotel because she came there a couple of times already.
Master safe cracker Stanimirovic implied the hotel staff themselves could have contacted the robbers to say: 'Hey, Kim Kardashian is here in room so-and-so'
Stanimirovic (left) said the ruthless criminals act like 'Samurai', only stealing 'stuff that is insured'
Stanimirovic says the Pink Panthers are never violent, adding: 'I am a thief, but a gentleman. We always made clear plans'
'She helped the bandits... because she advertises what she has,' Stanimirovic said of Kardashian, who regularly shares pictures of her shimmering jewels with her millions of social media followers
'They just waited for her and they knew she was coming for fashion week. This was a pre-planned, inside job and they pulled it off.'
The crime took place on Monday at the Hotel de Pourtales in Paris, France, a set of eight luxury apartments reserved for celebrities and the ultra-rich.
Kardashian was allegedly tied up in the bath and begged not to be raped while a gang of five men looted £8.5million of jewels.
'She helped the bandits, the ones that pulled the caper off, because she advertises what she has,' Stanimirovic said. 'Everybody knows that Kanye gave her that ring. She wears it with pride.'
The gang is highly educated and athletic, with each member fluent in 'multiple languages', he said. 'The Pink Panthers they got balls and they show it over and over. They don't hurt anyone. It's not lucrative for them to hurt anyone.
'That's why I'm thinking this job with Kardashian is the Pink Panthers. She was an easy target and you can't really combat somebody that has a plan. These guys are experts.'
Rakjo Causevic, who also claims to be one of the founders of the gang, described its members as 'gentleman thieves' because they never physically harm their victims.
Kardashian was allegedly tied up in the bath and begged not to be raped while a gang of five men looted £8.5million of jewels. Pictured: Kardashian with jeweller Lorraine Schwartz who designed her £3.5m engagement ring
'They knew she [Kardashian] was coming for fashion week. This was a pre-planned, inside job and they pulled it off,' Stanimirovic said. Pictured: Kardashian showing off her jewels on Instagram
THE PINK PANTHERS: THE REAL-LIFE OCEAN'S 11
Operating from London through to Tokyo, the Panthers' exploits read like a stack of heist-movie scripts, combining the ingenuity of Oceans 11, the ruthlessness of Reservoir Dogs, and the snazzy Riviera locations of Inspector Clouseau's crime capers.
The arch criminals were behind the 2003 raid on Graffs in London's New Bond Street, Britain's biggest successful diamond heist, they drove an Audi through glass doors at a Dubai shopping mall, made off on bicycles from a raid in Tokyo and in St Tropez, made their escape by speedboat as pursuing police cars were stuck in traffic.
Born out of the bloody Balkans wars of the 1990s, the gang of 'gentleman thieves' have made a reputation as a professional outfit.
The Panthers pulled off the most lucrative heist ever when they stole £90million worth of gems from the Carlton Intercontinental Hotel in Cannes, including this teardrop choker fitted with hundreds of white diamonds
The Panthers pulled off their most notorious heist at the same Cannes hotel - the Carlton Intercontinental (pictured) - that featured in the Alfred Hitchcock film, 'To Catch a Thief'
The gang have been behind raids at 120 jewellery stores in Dubai, Switzerland, France, Japan, Germany Luxembourg, Spain, Monaco and the UK.
It operated under the radar until 2003 when three members brazenly walked into the Graff Diamonds store on London's New Bond Street, London, and left with 47 pieces of jewellery worth £23million.
In 2013, they pulled off the most lucrative robbery ever when they made off with £90million worth of diamonds, gems and jewellery in the Carlton Intercontinental Hotel, Cannes, heist.
The gang is reportedly made up of 200 members at any one time and is said to be based in Serbia and Montenegro.
St Tropez, playground of the rich and famous, was the set for another daring raid in 2005 when the gang disguised themselves by wearing garish, floral Hawaiian shirts to blend in with wealthy holidaymakers.
Despite the romance and glamour surrounding their crimes, the gang does not shy away from using weapons and threatened customers and workers with guns during the 2013 Cannes raid
One of the female Panthers, Bojana Mitic, drove one of the two Audis that smashed through the shopping mall's entrance and then kept watch as her accomplices raided the store
They put on masks before they stormed the Julian jewellery store and escaped n speedboats, making chasing law enforcement look foolish.
Japan's biggest ever jewel heist - the 2004 £20million raid on Tokyo's Le Supre Diamant Couture De Maki, was also the work of the Panthers.
Stolen in the raid was the £17million 125 carat necklace encrusted with 116 diamonds, known as the Comtesse de Vendôme, which had been on display since the boutique opened in 1991.
Despite the romance of their crimes, the gang does not shy away from using terror and weapons in its heists.
In 2005 a shop assistant at a Vienna jeweller was shot in the face during a raid.
Two years later three female shop assistants were temporarily blinded from being sprayed in the face with tear gas in Tokyo.
'Pink Panther is a system,' he told a Montenegrin journalist earlier this year. 'We created a system. We were never violent. I am a thief, but a gentleman. We always made clear plans.'
The gang is thought to comprise between 200 and 800 members who know each other from the military, prison or the criminal underworld.
It has very little centralised structure, functioning more as a loose collection of affiliated cells, making it more difficult to investigate.
'They don't have a master. No leader. No head and no tail. All they do is they go by their intelligence,' Stanimirovic said.
The criminals avoid detection by remaining in each other's company constantly for the two weeks it takes to execute the plan.
Although the gang does not have a strict hierarchy, one of its key leaders is thought to be 33-year-old Dragan Mikic, an expert jewel thief who mounted an audacious escape from a French prison in 2002 while gang members fired Kalashnikovs at the watchtower.
Spectacular jailbreaks are one of the gang's specialisms. In May, three members were rescued from a Swiss prison in different operations.
The crime took place on Monday at the Hotel de Pourtales in Paris, France, a set of eight luxury apartments reserved for celebrities and the ultra-rich. Pictured: Kardashian showing off a golden brace and her diamond ring
'Everybody knows that Kanye gave her [Kardashian] that ring. She wears it with pride,' Stanimirovic said
In one of them, a van rammed open a prison gate and gang members pinned down guards with automatic weapons fire while the convict climbed over the wall with a ladder.
It is not known whether the guns were loaded or simply firing blanks, a technique which the Pink Panthers have used in the past to clear an area while avoiding casualties.
The super-criminals have got away with tens of millions of pounds in jewels in high-profile heists since 1984.
The gang, whose members mostly hail from Serbia and Montenegro, has stolen more than £280million in audacious raids in glamorous cities all over the world, from London and Paris to Dubai and Tokyo.
They received their nickname after a 2003 London robbery when a thief hid a diamond in a pot of beauty cream, similar to the plot of one of the Pink Panther movies about an inept French detective played by English actor Peter Sellers.
Their ruses to gain entry have included dressing as golfers, Hawaiian tourists, workmen and police officers.
Stanimirovic said Kardashian was an easy target because she was by herself and she had been to the hotel several times before. Pictured: One of Kim's children holding her 20-carat engagement ring
Famously, in Dubai the criminals used high-powered Audi limousines to race across the polished floors of a shopping mall and smash the window of a jewellery shop in 2007.
Raiders in balaclavas and body suits made their way inside and escaped with £1.9million worth of gems, in a lightning raid lasting just 170 seconds.
In another heist, in Tokyo, smartly-dressed Pink Panther criminals sprayed employees with tear gas before snatching nearly £2million of precious stones and escaping on bicycles.
'When we go out, we dress nice, in suits,' one gang member told the New Yorker magazine.
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