Thief Arrested, Charged With Using Slick Method to Steal $250K Tiffany Ring


Tiffany jewelry has been a staple in American culture for decades as the small turquoise boxes have become synonymous with precious diamond pieces. While Tiffany doesn’t sell faux diamonds, one store found itself with an imitation ring after a thief pulled off a clever switcheroo. 

According to a criminal complaint obtained by The Associated Press, authorities are searching for 49-year-old Yaorong Wan of South Korea after he allegedly committed crimes from South Korea to both U.S. coasts. On March 4, Wan was reportedly visiting the Tiffany store at Rockefeller Center in New York when he asked an employee to see different pieces of jewelry including a diamond ring worth $255,000. Unbeknownst to the worker, he allegedly took the piece and replaced it with a cubic zirconia ring in that moment. 

It didn’t come to light until a week later when Tiffany employees were doing a routine inventory check and found that the diamond ring was replaced with one bearing a fake stone. According to the AP, police reviewed surveillance footage from the store and found that Wan snuck the real ring into the palm of his hand and switched it out for the cubic zirconia replica

It’s not the only crime Wan stands accused of. He’s also charged with stealing a $25,000 diamond ring from a Cartier store across Manhattan at Hudson Yards on March 12. The complaint claims he walked away with the ring and didn’t leave a fake in its place. He has open arrest warrants in New Jersey and in Nassau County on Long Island and is also a suspect in Cartier store thefts in California and Florida. He’s even wanted in South Korea on similar charges of luxury jewelry store theft. 

Wan was arrested May 3 and arraigned in Manhattan criminal court on grand larceny charges the following day. After he was placed on supervised release, he was taken to Nassau Country and received another grand larceny charge on May 5.

Diamonds are forever, but running from the law usually isn’t. 

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