Suspect in $170,000 Chicago diamond theft arrested at Miami airport

Police say Sunny Isles Beach resident Tamaz Hubel tried to board plane to France

MIAMI – A 67-year-old South Florida man has been arrested in connection with the theft of $170,000 worth of diamonds from a Chicago jewelry store.

Chicago police said Tamaz Hubel was taken into custody Sunday while trying to board a plane to France at Miami International Airport. 

Police said the theft occurred June 6 at a store along downtown Chicago's "Jeweler's Row." They said the Sunny Isles Beach man was able to "conceal and remove" two diamonds.

Detectives in Chicago identified Hubel and began tracking him.

Hubel was arrested with help from Miami-Dade police, the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Apparently, this wasn't his first time. According to a 2010 post on the International Diamond Exchange website, Hubel was using an alias and posing as a diamond buyer so he could get close enough to steal the pricey stones.

He was being held at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center on an out-of-state fugitive warrant and is expected to be extradited to Illinois to face charges.