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The skinny

The skinny: Thieves wanted Cartier's costliest ring and got it

Cartier caper

Thieves wanted the costliest ring and got it

Police are trying to track down two men who stole Cartier's most expensive ring, but one thing is clear: The bilingual, elegantly attired thieves were savvy. Without pulling a weapon, they walked off with a $693,000 diamond-encrusted ring Tuesday evening from Cartier's store on Via Condotti, a tony shopping street near Rome's Spanish Steps. Police official Paolo Guiso, who is leading the investigation, told the Associated Press on Wednesday that the thieves, speaking Arabic and French, talked their way into seeing several rings after telling the saleswoman they needed a special gift for a wedding. "One man distracted the saleswoman" and while she was taking out still another ring to show the customers, "the other quickly took the ring," Guiso said. One of the men then left, claiming he needed to find someone who spoke Italian but never came back. The other also quickly and calmly exited the store. Both apparently blended into a crowd of shoppers outside.

cash and wary

This $10,000 just doesn't fit the bill

A $10,000 bill? The staff at a Massachusetts bank just wasn't buying it. The suspicious staffers quickly determined that the bill a woman brought into the Lowell bank was a fake. Michael Gallagher, risk management director at Enterprise Bank, told the Sun newspaper that it is believed there are only about 300 $10,000 bills left, and most are in the hands of collectors.

buttering her up

Mother-in-law is toast of the town

A Leicester, England, woman turned a photo of her mother-in-law into the world's largest toast mosaic — using a staggering 9,852 slices of bread. Laura Hadland, 27, talked 40 friends into helping her make the massive mosaic out of 600 loaves. They used nine toasters to brown the bread to varying degrees before arranging the slices to make the 32-foot, 8-inch by 42-foot, 3-inch picture. After spending six hours perfecting the image, Hadland and her friends surprised husband Mike's mother, Sandra Whitfield, with the Guinness World Records portrait to celebrate her 50th birthday.

law and disorder

This juror fails impartiality test

A woman went from juror to witness in a Cincinnati courtroom this week. After hearing opening testimony about an anonymous 911 call in a domestic violence case, the juror raised her hand and said she was, in fact, the unidentified caller. A mistrial was declared after she pointed to the defendant and told the court: "It woke me up out of my bed and I saw him beating on her. I thought she must be dead." She will return as a star witness for the prosecution when the retrial begins. The judge said he'd never seen anything like it in his 33 years on the bench.

Compiled from Times wire services and other sources.

The skinny: Thieves wanted Cartier's costliest ring and got it 10/20/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 20, 2010 8:51pm]

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