CBS Local — Police in Paris say thieves made off with hundreds of bottles of vintage wine after drilling into a collector’s private cellar. The amount stolen is still being calculated, but the total value of the heist is reportedly near $300,000.
According to French police, the robbers used the city’s network of ancient catacombs to get close to the valuable collection. The suspects allegedly then drilled about 60 feet into the victim’s cellar to steal the prized wines.
“We believe they must have made visits before; the suspects didn’t drill that particular wall by accident,” a police spokesman told local media outlets, per The Guardian.
The catacombs are made up of about 150 miles of underground tunnels, 60 feet beneath Paris. Only a small section in southern Paris is open to the public during the day.
Investigators believe the thieves could have broken in at any time over the last month.
“The owners just discovered the theft, but it could have taken place any time between late July and late August,” said a spokeswoman for the Paris prosecutor. Officials added they believe the suspects made their escape by using the tunnels after raiding the Luxembourg gardens apartment.
The crooks apparently studied the 500-year-old tunnels carefully as many people who have snuck into the catacombs became lost and in need of rescue. The vintage bottles stolen are reportedly worth around $1,200 each. Two other cellars were also broken into but nothing has been reported missing from them.