Canadian police believe $20 million in gold has disappeared abroad after robbery

A Canadian police department believes more than 6,500 gold bars have disappeared overseas after being stolen from an airport last year.

The incident at Toronto's Pearson International Airport in April 2023 was perhaps the most valuable gold theft in history. Police said gold worth more than CA$20,000,000 was stolen in the form of 6,600 serialized bars.

“We believe a significant portion of it has gone overseas to markets where gold is plentiful,” lead investigator Detective Sergeant Mike Mavity said at a June 21 meeting of the Peel Police Service Board, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Canada police say 9 people will be charged over theft of $20 million worth of gold from airport last year

Canada Pearson Heist

Police officers open the back of a recovered truck during a press conference regarding Project 24K, a joint investigation into the theft of gold from Pearson International Airport in Brampton, Ontario. (Arlin McAdory/The Canadian Press via AP)

He added, “That would be Dubai or India, where you can take gold with a serial number, and they will still respect it and melt it down.”

Mavity said he believed the gold had been handed over to another party and was melted down soon after the theft.

Suspects in the case include a jewelry store owner, a former Air Canada manager and a warehouse worker. A total of nine people have been arrested in connection with the case.

Toronto airport robbery: Gold and other valuables worth $15 million stolen from cargo facility

Canada Gold Heist Toronto Pearson Airport

A photo of the fake seafood order used to gain entry to an Air Canada warehouse is shown on a monitor. Peel Regional Police and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms announced details and arrests made in connection with the theft of $20 million worth of gold from Pearson International Airport. (Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

The suspects allegedly falsified the paperwork by using a completed bill for the pickup of seafood items, which was given to the warehouse attendant.

Authorities believe a small amount of the precious metal was melted down in the basement of a Mississauga jewelry store shortly after the robbery. Only CA$90,000 has been recovered from the robbery.

Police have attempted to establish a link between the stolen gold and cross-border gun smuggling, citing dozens of firearms seized from suspects in the investigation.

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Canada Gold Heist Toronto Pearson Airport

The lead investigator on the case, Peel Police Sergeant Mike Mavity, is speaking to media while holding tight to the total amount of gold recovered so far. (Richard Lautens/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Two fully automatic weapons and several unidentified firearms were recovered, but authorities have not yet produced concrete evidence of a connection to the illegal gun trade.

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