A Chinese woman who had an elaborate plan to steal a 3.54-carat diamond valued at over $2 million ended up with a fake in her stomach instead.
Liu Xiulan, from Hunan Province, swallowed a fake stone made of zirconium and oxygen after she was spotted trying to swap it for an expensive diamond at the Hong Kong Jewellery and Gem Fair at the Convention and Exhibition Centre on June 25, according to a District Court hearing reported by the South China Morning Post.
At the convention, Liu asked a manager at a booth to see the valuable diamond. She then swapped the diamond with a fake stone she was carrying.
The manager, however, noticed the difference and so she then attempted to swap them again. She dropped the fake diamond on the floor and then swallowed it to hide evidence of her crime, according to the story heard at court.
Four days after swallowing the stone, two gemstones were found in Liu’s stool.
Liu, 34, and her accomplice, Huang Yanming, 42, both pleaded guilty to one count of attempted theft at district court hearing.
Judge Gary Lam Kar-yan said during sentencing that the two women were well dressed and used fake permits to get into the fair. “They were armed with two diamonds to perform the swap,” he said.
In September, Thai authorities had a doctor retrieve a stolen diamond from a Chinese woman’s intestines.