Theft of the Jules Rimet Trophy

Theft Of The Jules Rimet Trophy

Theft of the Jules Rimet Trophy

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The Jules Rimet Trophy, awarded to the winner of the football World Cup, was stolen in 1966 prior to the 1966 FIFA World Cup in England. The trophy was later recovered. One man was convicted for being involved but other possible culprits are still unknown.

Trophy placed in an exhibition

The Football Association had received the trophy in January 1966 before the scheduled World Cup tournament the next July. It was usually kept in their headquarters at Lancaster Gate apart from a couple of publicity events. In February, Stanley Gibbons' stamp company received permission to place the Trophy in their Stampex exhibition in March in condition that it would be under guard at all times. The trophy was also insured for £30,000 (despite its official value being only £3,000).

The exhibition was kept in the Westminster Central Hall and opened on 19 March 1966, and the World Cup was a major attraction. Two uniformed officers guarded the trophy around the clock, reinforced by two plainclothes officers during the day. Additional guards stood beside the display cabinet when the exhibition was open, but nobody was watching the trophy all the time. On Sundays the Central Hall was used for Methodist services.

Theft

On Sunday 20 March, when the guards began a noon circuit, around 12:10 they noticed that someone had forced open the display case and the rear doors of the building and stolen the trophy. The wooden bar that held the door closed was lying on the floor; thieves had removed the...
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