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ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Let's fade down that dramatic music now for this next item, which could be summed up by the fake film title "Pink Panther Thief Escapes." Yesterday, Milan Poparic, a member of the Pink Panther jewel thief gang, escaped from a Swiss prison. The Bosnian national had been serving time for robbing a jewelry store in 2009, and this was some jailbreak. Accomplices rammed the gates of the prison compound with two vehicles.

They set up ladders so Poparic and another inmate could climb over the prison wall, and they kept guards at bay with automatic weapons fire. No one was injured.

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SIEGEL: Interpol dubbed this gang of international jewel thieves The Pink Panthers after British police discovered a stolen diamond ring in a jar of face cream. That same thing happened in the classic 1964 comedy. The Pink Panther gang has gotten around. It's believed to be behind thefts in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and the United States of as much as $400 million worth of jewelry.

As for the escape of Poparic, if this were a movie, it would be part of a trilogy. He is the third member of the Pink Panthers to have broken out of a Swiss prison in the past several months.

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SIEGEL: This is NPR News.

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