$100 Million Gold Heist At Canada's Biggest Airport - Goodfellas Meets Italian Job
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police confirmed they are looking into a gold robbery at Pearson International Airport, just outside Toronto.
At this point, it appears investigators have no idea who stole the gold and how it was removed. We have an idea...
“We are still trying to get accurate information on the heist,” an RCMP spokesperson said, declining to confirm how much gold is missing.
The Toronto Sun reported earlier Thursday that 3,600 pounds of gold being moved through the airport had been stolen.
That would be worth around $105 million.
Pearson is rated as one of the top 30 cargo airports in the world and gold mined in Canada can travel through Pearson on its way to customers around the world.
The newspaper said the theft was likely linked to organized crime, citing an unnamed police source.
The heist reminded The Sun reporters of Nick Pillegi’s iconic book Wiseguy (that Goodfellas was based on) in which his boss Paul Vario and underling James 'Jimmy the Gent' Burke "owned" JFK Airport because several organized crime groups are known to have either people or allies placed at Pearson. Monitoring their activities and controlling them is reportedly close to a full-time job.
“See, you gotta understand, we grew up near the airport. It belonged to Paulie.”
- Henry Hill (Ray Liotta), Goodfellas
Gangster Henry Hill. FBI
Burke and his hand-picked team hit JFK again on Dec. 11, 1978, with a $5.875 million robbery of cash and jails from Lufthansa. That caper was worth $24.4 million in 2021.
But, back to Pearson, right now, The Sun's Brad Hunter reports that cops are being quiet.
One thing appears clear - investigators don’t believe the gold was stolen in an attempt to fund terrorism.
If that was the case, protocols would have seen at least a partial shutdown of parts of the airport as soon as police or security officials became aware of the robbery and that didn’t happen.
Finally, The Sun notes that this isn’t the first major gold heist to happen out of Pearson.
In 1952, ten boxes of gold were bound for Montreal but only four boxes showed up. That heist was valued at between $215,000 to $330,000 at the time or more than $3 million today.
Nevertheless, this is one of the largest robberies in Canadian history... from a supposedly secure facility... leaving nothing than a mystery behind.