Saint John jewelry theft draws similar stories from stores Canada-wide
Jewelry stores across country share info about $10K diamond theft suspects
Handling loose gems is a lot different at W. Smith & Co. Fine Jewellers since thieves managed to steal a $10,000 diamond.
Photo ID is required from the potential buyer and no one can leave until the Saint John store verifies it's locking up the right gem.
Caution may be paramount, but store owner Wayne Smith at least has comfort knowing his store wasn't the only one targeted by the alleged thieves. Since releasing security footage showing the theft, Smith said he's been called by jewellers and police from across Canada.
"I've had calls from Vancouver, I've had calls from P.E.I., I've had calls from Ontario, and I've had calls from the Montreal police," said Smith.
Police looked at cruise passenger IDs
After seeing his story, Smith said store owners recognized the couple and looked closer at their stock. "[They] went back [to] their inventory and went 'Oh my God, I lost a stone' or 'I lost two stones'" said Smith.
Police in Saint John confirmed they had gone through identification photos of cruise ship passengers, but refused to rule anything out.
Sgt. Charles Breen said a person of interest was being sought. Breen said he didn't want to tip off a suspect and would not provide any details about where police were searching.
Montreal police know them, Smith says
When Smith first came forward with his story, he urged other jewellers to ignore feelings of embarrassment about being scammed. "They're professionals," he said while comparing getting duped by the pair to falling for a phone scam.
"If we work together as a team, we could have known a lot ahead," said Smith, who believes passing on suspicions or security footage to the public could be the key to preventing cross-country thefts.
Still, even if a store owner isn't willing to go public, Smith hopes jewellers will simply tell any similar story about the couple to Saint John police.