A jewellery shop has been raided by thieves in a shocking daylight robbery at one of the largest department stores in Germany.
Four robbers entered KaDeWe and headed for the Chopard jewellery boutique. Using canisters of tear gas to disarm a security guard, the thieves smashed the jewellery cabinets with hammers.
Whilst it is unclear exactly how much jewellery was stolen by the robbers, Rolex watches and other high value items were taken in the daring heist, reportedly costing a combined total of €100,000.
An accomplice in a black Audi getaway car was waiting, allowing the robbers and their loot to race off before the arrival of the police.
Armed police later arrived and closed the store, leaving many customers seeking new options for their last minute Christmas purchases.
Police confirmed that several customers had been caught up in the tear gas and were given medical treatment at the scene.
The heist appears to have been well planned, with the robbers knowing the best entrances and exit points to enter and escape the shopping center in under ten minutes.
Speaking to RBB radio, Police chief Jorg Radek confirmed that the robbery had been carried out by an organised gang of thieves: "The thieves came in broad daylight, they were professional and well-organised."
KaDeWe, an abbreviation for "department store of the west" is renowned for its luxurious shops and high-end shopping opportunities.
Opened in 1907, the department store is considered one of Berlin's most expensive and glitzy shopping venues, particularly during peak Christmas shopping times. The store's website boasts that over 180,000 customers from across the globe visit KaDeWe every day.
A spokesman for the store has insisted that KaDeWe's security system "took effect very quick. We are prepared for every situation."