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The Million-Dollar Diamond Theft At The World Trade Center On 9/11

Over a million dollars' worth of diamonds and bonds were apparently stolen from an armored truck in the basement of the World Trade Center when the terrorist attacks took place on September 11, 2001, which suggests that someone--or some people--may have had foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks and exploited the chaos they knew the attacks would generate in order to commit their crime at a time when there was minimal risk of getting caught.

Furthermore, there was an attempt to remove an unusually large amount of gold from vaults in the basement of the World Trade Center at the time of the attacks, which indicates that other people may have known in advance about the attacks and, based on their foreknowledge, tried to get the gold out before it became buried in the rubble of the Twin Towers. Whoever was transporting the gold away from the vaults apparently abandoned their vehicle and escaped to safety before the towers collapsed, which suggests they were warned in advance about the collapses and were consequently able to get away before the buildings came down.

Only a limited amount of information has been reported about these incidents, but the details that have been reported certainly seem suspicious and so there is surely a need to look into these events closely.
 http://shoestring911.blogspot.com/2016/10/the-million-dollar-diamond-theft-at.html

Posted by Shoestring at 02:26

Monday, 31 October 2016

The Million-Dollar Diamond Theft at the World Trade Center on 9/11

Over a million dollars' worth of diamonds and bonds were apparently stolen from an armored truck in the basement of the World Trade Center when the terrorist attacks took place on September 11, 2001, which suggests that someone--or some people--may have had foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks and exploited the chaos they knew the attacks would generate in order to commit their crime at a time when there was minimal risk of getting caught.

Furthermore, there was an attempt to remove an unusually large amount of gold from vaults in the basement of the World Trade Center at the time of the attacks, which indicates that other people may have known in advance about the attacks and, based on their foreknowledge, tried to get the gold out before it became buried in the rubble of the Twin Towers. Whoever was transporting the gold away from the vaults apparently abandoned their vehicle and escaped to safety before the towers collapsed, which suggests they were warned in advance about the collapses and were consequently able to get away before the buildings came down.

Only a limited amount of information has been reported about these incidents, which are described below, and so it is difficult to determine exactly what happened. However, the details that have been reported certainly seem suspicious and so there is surely a need to look into these events closely.

DIAMONDS AND BONDS WERE APPARENTLY STOLEN FROM AN ARMORED TRUCK
The apparent theft of diamonds and bonds appears to have taken place on September 11 sometime between around 9:15 a.m. and 10:28 a.m., when the second of the Twin Towers collapsed. A Brink's armored truck, driven by 68-year-old Joseph Trombino, had arrived at the World Trade Center sometime before 8:46 a.m. that day. Trombino drove his vehicle down to the underground parking garage of the North Tower to drop off $14 million in cash.

He stayed with the vehicle while three colleagues who were with him passed on the cash to some Bank of Nova Scotia guards, who put it into canvas carts to be taken to a vault in the tower. He was in the truck at 8:46 a.m., when American Airlines Flight 11--the first plane to be hijacked that day--crashed into the North Tower, many floors above him. [1]

After the crash, Trombino's colleagues were evacuated from the tower. However, although he was parked just 100 feet from an exit, Trombino stayed with his vehicle. [2] He was in it at 9:03 a.m., when the second hijacked plane--United Airlines Flight 175--crashed into the South Tower. [3] The truck was still in the underground garage when the North Tower came down, at 10:28 a.m. Although Trombino had left the vehicle by then, he was killed in the collapse. [4]

VALUABLES WERE FOUND TO BE MISSING FROM THE TRUCK
Recovery workers found the Brink's armored truck in the rubble of the World Trade Center just over three months later, on December 21, 2001. Lieutenant William Keegan, who was in charge of the Port Authority Police Department's nighttime rescue and recovery operation at Ground Zero, was promptly called and told about the discovery.

Keegan immediately called Brink's and passed on the news. He was told during the call that the vehicle's driver, Trombino, was still missing. He was also told that the vehicle should have in it over a million dollars' worth of valuables, comprising $250,000 in diamonds and $750,000 in negotiable bonds. He then headed out to help recover the vehicle.

After Keegan reached the location of the truck, recovery workers cleared away enough rubble to look into the cab, to see if Trombino's dead body was inside. They found that the cab was empty, thus showing that Trombino left the vehicle before the North Tower collapsed on September 11.

Keegan then wanted to get into the back of the truck, to remove the diamonds and bonds. The back of the truck was presumably locked, since recovery workers cut into the roof with a circular saw and created an opening to get inside. A Port Authority Police Department officer went through the opening and into the vehicle to inspect it, and found it was empty. "No bonds. No diamonds. Nothing," Keegan described. [5]

Trombino's body was subsequently found, although it is unclear when it was discovered. Trombino's wife, Jean Trombino, said in January 2002 that she had been told the body had been found but not where it was found. She said the family had asked where it was discovered but, she commented, "I guess we haven't gotten the right person yet." [6] Brink's reported in 2014 that the body was found near the water fountain between the Twin Towers, in the World Trade Center plaza. [7] This indicates that Trombino tried to get away from the North Tower after the South Tower collapsed, presumably fearing the North Tower would come down too, but was killed when the North Tower collapsed.

The $14 million in cash that Trombino dropped off on September 11 was found in the rubble of the World Trade Center in February 2002. However, according to Keegan, the diamonds and bonds that had been in Trombino's truck were never recovered. [8]

DRIVER CALLED HIS COMPANY FROM THE UNDERGROUND GARAGE
Trying to determine when and how the diamonds and bonds might have been taken from Trombino's truck is a difficult task, since Trombino's actions between when he dropped off the $14 million in cash and his death, when the North Tower collapsed, are unclear and accounts sometimes conflict.

Trombino reportedly called the Brink's office in Brooklyn after Flight 11 hit the North Tower, at 8:46 a.m., to find out what was going on. [9] He said to the dispatcher: "Something's happening. What should I do?" [10] He called the company from a pay phone, according to his wife. [11] But his daughter, Bo Kirby, and Brink's have stated that he made the call on his radio. [12]

Trombino made the call at 9:10 a.m., according to the St. Petersburg Times. [13] His daughter, though, said he made it at 9:15 a.m. This was the last time anyone heard from him, she said. [14] But Jack Walter, a friend of Trombino's, said the driver in fact made "several calls" to Brink's that morning. [15]

DRIVER IGNORED THE ADVICE TO LEAVE THE BUILDING IMMEDIATELY
It is mysterious that Trombino stayed in the underground parking garage rather than promptly getting away to somewhere safer after Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower. The driver's three colleagues, who offloaded the $14 million in cash at the World Trade Center, were evacuated from the North Tower sometime after the plane hit it and got away unharmed. Trombino, though, remained with his vehicle. [16]

In light of the conditions he described when he called Brink's, he should surely have thought he might be in danger and needed to get away from the North Tower as quickly as possible. He told the dispatcher that "the walls around him were starting to crumble and water was seeping into the garage," according to Walter. [17] Before the line went dead, he said the "building was shaking and water was cascading down," according to his wife. [18]

It seems odder still that Trombino stayed in the underground garage when we take into consideration the advice that other people reportedly gave him. For example, a police officer instructed him to move his truck, he told the dispatcher. [19] The officer told him to do so because the North Tower was unstable, according to his daughter. [20] And the dispatcher advised him to leave his vehicle and get out of the building immediately, Brink's stated. [21]

William Keegan suggested that Trombino may have stayed with his truck because he wanted to protect its cargo or he was unaware that his colleagues had been evacuated from the North Tower and he expected them to return to the vehicle. [22] These were just guesses, though. Certainly, if the truck was locked, it should have been unnecessary for Trombino to stay with it to protect the cargo. Trombino's family in fact said they thought that if the driver stayed with the vehicle, he would have done so not to guard the valuables in it but, instead, simply "because he thought his crew was coming back." [23]

SOMEONE TRIED TO REMOVE GOLD FROM VAULTS UNDER THE WORLD TRADE CENTER
The attempt at removing gold from vaults in the basement of the World Trade Center appears to have taken place around the time the Twin Towers were attacked but before either of the buildings collapsed. The incident came to light weeks after September 11, when recovery workers unearthed millions of dollars' worth of gold bullion that had been abandoned in a tunnel under the World Trade Center. [24]

Large quantities of gold and silver were stored in vaults, owned by the Comex metals trading division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, a few floors below ground at the World Trade Center site. Comex had $100 million worth of gold in the vaults, according to The Times of London. It also held $220 million worth of gold in the vaults on behalf of others and $430 million worth of silver. [25] To reach the vaults, armored trucks would drive through what were once the tunnels for the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad. [26]

The gold unearthed by recovery workers was discovered around the end of October 2001 in a delivery tunnel under World Trade Center Building 5--a building northeast of the Twin Towers that was severely damaged when the towers collapsed. The bullion was found along with a 10-wheel truck, which had presumably been used to transport it away from the vaults, and some crushed cars. There were no dead bodies around, indicating that whoever tried to remove the gold abandoned their effort before the Twin Towers collapsed. The quantity of gold that was being removed is unreported, but it was clearly a large amount, since, after recovery workers found it, two trucks were required to transport it away from the tunnel. [27]

Chicago Board of Trade insider Joyce Selander has explained why she found it suspicious that someone tried to take away so much gold at the time of the 9/11 attacks. She wrote that a person could normally pick up their gold from a vault like those under the World Trade Center by showing up at any time, without prior notification, with their vault receipts. "But so much [gold] that you needed a 10-wheeler?" she asked. In contrast, she noted that at the Chicago Board of Trade, a person would usually pull up their "car or small truck" to take their gold away. "Was someone warned of the imminent collapse of the South Tower, someone who loaded the gold and was ready to spirit it away?" she asked. [28]

The scene that was unearthed in the delivery tunnel clearly looked suspicious. The evidence suggests that someone, or some people, may have known in advance that the World Trade Center was going to be attacked on September 11 and wanted to move the gold before it became buried in the rubble when the Twin Towers collapsed. They may have wanted to get the gold away specifically while the attacks were taking place, because the chaos that was sure to occur at that time would make it less likely that the removal of an unusually large quantity of gold would draw attention.

Additionally, the fact that the gold was abandoned in the delivery tunnel before the Twin Towers came down indicates that whoever was trying to remove it may have been told to get away from the World Trade Center by someone who knew in advance that the buildings were going to collapse. If this was the case, it means the person who issued the warning likely knew that the 9/11 attacks were going to involve bringing down the Twin Towers.

WHO TOOK THE DIAMONDS AND BONDS FROM THE BRINK'S TRUCK?
The information that has been reported about the apparent theft of diamonds and bonds from the Brink's armored truck and the attempted removal of gold from the basement of the World Trade Center on September 11 gives rise to many questions. For example, in his recollection of the discovery of the Brink's truck, William Keegan made no mention of any indications that the vehicle had been broken into. But if it was not broken into, someone must have unlocked it so the diamonds and bonds could be removed. Did the driver, Joseph Trombino, unlock the truck or was someone else involved?

If someone other than Trombino unlocked the truck, who were they and how were they able to unlock the vehicle? If Trombino unlocked the truck, why did he do this? Did someone perhaps threaten him and force him to open the truck so they could steal the valuables from it?

The information currently available, if accurate, suggests that someone other than Trombino took away the valuables from the truck. If Trombino had taken the diamonds and bonds with him when he left his vehicle, these would surely have been on him when his body was found. Instead, the only item found with him, according to Brink's, was his messenger bag. [29]

It is conceivable that Trombino took the diamonds and bonds from his truck, perhaps so they wouldn't be buried in the rubble if the North Tower collapsed, and then these items were surreptitiously stolen by an opportunistic thief when Trombino's body was found. This scenario, however, seems unlikely in light of the tight security at the World Trade Center site in the months after 9/11.

In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, the Port Authority Police Department, New York Police Department, National Guard, and other agencies established a "security perimeter" around the site, according to Charles Vitchers and Robert Gray, two workers involved in the recovery effort at Ground Zero. [30] There were "legions of police officers" preventing members of the public from approaching the site, the Associated Press reported. [31] Pastor C. H. Dyer described the "extremely tight security" he observed when he visited the site a few weeks after 9/11. "No piece of evidence, no body or even body part would leave the scene unexamined," he recalled. [32] Sneaking away a million dollars' worth of diamonds and bonds under these circumstances would surely have been extremely difficult.

THEFT OF THE DIAMONDS AND BONDS MUST HAVE BEEN CAREFULLY PLANNED
If someone, or some people, other than Trombino took the diamonds and bonds from the Brink's truck, they presumably must have known beforehand that the vehicle would be at the World Trade Center on the morning of September 11. This fact would apparently have been quite easy to discover, since Trombino followed a regular routine. He and his co-workers would stop at the Trade Center every day, Brink's stated. [33] Trombino would then "leave his armored truck and deliver millions of dollars in securities on foot to numerous stops around Wall Street," according to the New Jersey Star-Ledger. [34] A person could therefore have learned where the Brink's truck would be on the morning of September 11 simply by surveilling Trombino's daily movements.

If the diamonds and bonds were stolen from Trombino's truck, and those responsible decided specifically to commit their crime on September 11, this person, or persons, presumably had foreknowledge of the attacks on the World Trade Center and aimed to exploit the chaos the attacks would cause in order to steal the valuables when there would be minimal risk of getting caught. If this was the case, how did they learn the World Trade Center was going to be attacked on September 11?

TIMING OF THE ATTEMPTED REMOVAL OF GOLD INDICATES FOREKNOWLEDGE OF THE 9/11 ATTACKS
The attempted removal of millions of dollars' worth of gold from vaults under the World Trade Center also needs to be carefully investigated. Discovering who was behind this incident ought to be a fairly straightforward task. Investigators could, for example, determine who owned the truck that was transporting the gold simply on the basis of the vehicle's license plate number.

The fact that the removal of an unusually--and presumably suspiciously--large amount of gold from the vaults was attempted at the same time as the 9/11 attacks occurred seems unlikely to have been a coincidence. Those involved may therefore have known in advance what was going to happen on September 11 and specifically arranged to remove the gold when the attacks were underway. If this was the case, how did they get foreknowledge of the attacks?

Additionally, the fact that the vehicles found in the delivery tunnel with the gold bullion had apparently been abandoned before the Twin Towers collapsed suggests that the drivers were warned in advance that the towers were going to come down. If this was the case, who gave them the warning? And how did that person know the towers were going to come down?

HAVE INVESTIGATORS LOOKED INTO THESE INCIDENTS?
It would be helpful to know if the apparent theft of diamonds and bonds from the Brink's armored truck and the attempted removal of gold from vaults under the World Trade Center have ever been investigated. Has the FBI or any other government agency looked into these incidents? Did Brink's investigate the disappearance of diamonds and bonds from its truck? If these incidents have been investigated, what did the investigators find?

William Keegan wrote that a "noncriminal investigation report--NCIR #05-02--was prepared and filed" sometime after Joseph Trombino's truck was unearthed. However, he gave no details of what was in the report. [35] Did it provide any details of who might have taken the valuables from the truck?

Establishing what exactly happened and who was behind the two suspicious incidents described in this article would surely improve our understanding of the 9/11 attacks. Information already available suggests that these events may have come about as a result of some people having foreknowledge of the attacks, which they tried to use in order to gain financially.

If this was the case, investigating who these people were and who informed them about what was going to happen on September 11 may help determine the identities of some of the people who planned the 9/11 attacks. This is crucial information that needs to be uncovered.

NOTES
[1] "Still Alive in the Hearts of Those Who Loved Them." New York Times, September 17, 2001; "Francis J. Trombino, Survived One Attack to Meet Another." New Jersey Star-Ledger, January 2, 2002; William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure: The Untold Story of the Ground Zero Recovery Mission. New York: Touchstone, 2006, p. 147.
[2] Susan Taylor Martin, Bill Duryea, Michael Sandler, and Tom Drury, "96 Hours." St. Petersburg Times, September 16, 2001; William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, pp. 147-148.
[3] Sean Gardiner, "Family Prays for Armored Car Driver." Chicago Tribune, September 22, 2001.
[4] William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, pp. 147-148.
[5] Ibid. pp. 148-149.
[6] "Francis J. Trombino, Survived One Attack to Meet Another."
[7] "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute." Brink's Blog, September 10, 2014.
[8] William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, p. 149.
[9] "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[10] Susan Taylor Martin, Bill Duryea, Michael Sandler, and Tom Drury, "96 Hours."
[11] "Still Alive in the Hearts of Those Who Loved Them."
[12] Sean Gardiner, "Family Prays for Armored Car Driver"; "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[13] Susan Taylor Martin, Bill Duryea, Michael Sandler, and Tom Drury, "96 Hours."
[14] Sean Gardiner, "Family Prays for Armored Car Driver."
[15] "Francis J. Trombino, Survived One Attack to Meet Another."
[16] William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, pp. 147-148; "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[17] "Francis J. Trombino, Survived One Attack to Meet Another."
[18] "Still Alive in the Hearts of Those Who Loved Them."
[19] Ibid.
[20] Sean Gardiner, "Family Prays for Armored Car Driver."
[21] "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[22] William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, pp. 147-148.
[23] Sean Gardiner, "Family Prays for Armored Car Driver."
[24] Greg Gittrich, Thomas Zambito, and Leo Standora, "Cache of Gold Found at WTC." New York Daily News, October 31, 2001; Nicholas Wapshott, "Crushed Towers Give up Cache of Gold Ingots." The Times, November 1, 2001; Geoffrey Gray, "The Towers' Buried Treasure." New York, August 27, 2011.
[25] Len Zehr, Allan Robinson, and Andrew Willis, "Fortune in Bullion Buried in Rubble." Globe and Mail, September 13, 2001; Nicholas Wapshott, "Crushed Towers Give up Cache of Gold Ingots"; Elton Robinson, "Thanksgiving at Ground Zero." Delta Farm Press, November 19, 2001.
[26] Jim Dwyer, "Below Ground Zero, Silver and Gold." New York Times, November 1, 2001.
[27] Greg Gittrich, Thomas Zambito, and Leo Standora, "Cache of Gold Found at WTC."
[28] Joyce Selander, Joyce, Queen of the Mountain: Female Courage and Hand-to-Hand Combat in the World's Largest Money Pit. Bloomington, IN: iUniverse, 2011, p. 134.
[29] "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[30] Glenn Stout, Charles Vitchers, and Robert Gray, Nine Months at Ground Zero: The Story of the Brotherhood of Workers Who Took on a Job Like no Other. New York: Scribner, 2006, p. 43.
[31] Alan Clendenning, "$200 Million in Gold, Silver Under the Trade Center." Associated Press, October 6, 2001.
[32] C. H. Dyer, "September 11th: My Night at Ground Zero." C. H. Dyer: Thoughts and Visions From an Extreme Poverty Expert, September 2, 2011.
[33] "Brink's Fallen Hero: A 9/11 Tribute."
[34] "Francis J. Trombino, Survived One Attack to Meet Another."
[35] William Keegan Jr. with Bart Davis, Closure, p. 149.

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