On March 8, 2023, an attempted robbery for $32.5 million killed two people in the capital city of Chile – Santiago. The robbers were said to be heavily armed and had the money loaded onto a Latam Airlines aircraft. A shootout occurred between airport security and the ten robbers, which resulted in the death of one alleged criminal and a member of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation, or DGAC.
Initially, the robbers managed to get past Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport’s security after they arrived in three vehicles and tied up a security guard.
The money was being transferred from the plane that arrived from Miami to an armored truck, stated Manual Monsalve, Deputy Interior Minister. It was there that the two parties had the unfortunate shootout. Mr. Monsalve also said that “the DGAC officials’ brave actions frustrated the robbery” and that the shootout was an “intense exchange of gunfire.”
While one robber died, the rest of them escaped. Soon, two vehicles were found burned nearby.
Next to the Latam Aircraft was a parked Delta Airlines plane which, by the end of the shootout, had several bullet holes on its surface.
The DGAC General Director Raúl Jorquera said that none of the passengers were at risk during the incident and also acknowledged that the robbers possessed “high capacity firepower,” which could have allowed them to steal the money.
Mr. Jorquera stated that this attempted robbery would “undoubtedly lead us to revise processes and protocols that must be improved. It forces us to rethink many things.”
Over the past few years, the rate of organized crime in Chile has shot up. Robberies at the main seaports and elaborate train heists have been noticed nationwide.
Edited by Whitney Edna Ibe
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