Writing in next month's Wired, Joshua Davis presents a superb feature — the first person account of Leonardo Notarbartolo, who was convicted of robbing the Antwerp Diamond Center vault of $100 million worth of inventory. Notarbartolo's story is colorful and fascinating — and may even be true. It matches any heist flick for geekery and plot-twists:
Next, the King of Keys played out a hunch. In Notarbartolo's videos, the guard usually visited a utility room just before opening the vault. When the thieves searched the room, they found a major security lapse: The original vault key was hanging inside.
The King of Keys grabbed the original. There was no point in letting the safe manufacturers know that their precious key could be copied, and the police still don't know that a duplicate was made.
The King of Keys slotted the original in the keyhole and waited while the Genius dialed in the combination they had gleaned from the video. A moment later, the Genius nodded. The Monster turned off the lights–they didn't want to trigger the light detector in the vault when the door opened. In the darkness, the King of Keys turned the key and spun a four-pronged handle. The bolts that secured the door retracted and it swung heavily open.
Speedy ran up the stairwell. It was his job to stay in touch with Notarbartolo, but there was no cell phone reception down in the vault. Upstairs, he got a signal and dialed his old friend.
"We're in," he said and hung up.