Swedish police are on the hunt for a pair of thieves who stole some of the country’s priceless crown jewels — and escaped on a speedboat, according to local media.
Two crowns and an orb — the 17th century funeral regalia of King Karl IX and his wife Queen Kristina — were stolen from a glass case at a cathedral in Strängnäs, which is near Stockholm, Reuters reported.
The suspects were seen fleeing the cathedral in a motorboat across nearby Lake Mälaren, Reuters said.
Witness Tom Rowsell told local media, Aftonbladet, he was having lunch nearby “and one of my friends saw two people run from different directions. I saw a white little boat and the men jumped in the boat and gassed away.”
The jewels are decorated with gold, precious stones and pearls, marking “an enormous loss in cultural value and economic value,” Catharina Fröjd, a spokeswoman at Strängnäs cathedral, told Aftonbladet.
As the hunt continued late Tuesday, police spokesman Thomas Agnevik told Aftonbladet, “It’s 1-0 to them right now, but we do not know what it looks like tomorrow.”
Agnevik added to Reuters, “What usually happens with this type of object is that they are recovered sooner or later, because there are very few people who are prepared to handle such items.” He said that authorities have “high hopes” of retrieving the jewels.