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Kim Kardashian robber blames ‘showy’ star for Paris heist: ‘She was throwing money away, I was there to collect it’

Yunis Abbas, 67, was one of 16 people arrested for the 2016 Paris robbery

Meredith Clark
New York
Monday 22 August 2022 17:56 BST
Kim Kardashian says she experienced agoraphobia during quarantine and after Paris robbery

One of the men arrested for the 2016 Paris hotel robbery of Kim Kardashian has spoken out about the infamous heist, declaring he feels no guilt for the crime.

In October 2016, the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star was bound, gagged and held at gunpoint by a group of masked robbers at her temporary residence in Paris when the thieves stole almost $10m worth of jewelry they had spotted on social media.

In a new interview with VICE News, Yunis Abbas – one of the sixteen people arrested for the attack – shared details about the heist and insisted he blames Kardashian for being “showy” with her wealth on social media. Abbas, 67, also said he feels no guilt for the crime, despite acknowledging that it must have “traumatised” Kardashian.

“I went on the internet and I saw her jewelry, I saw her ring, I saw that she showed it everywhere and we knew this information through social media,” he said in the video. “We knew that she was coming for Fashion Week, so we went there to do some more reconnaissance so we were sure.”

Abbas visited the Paris hotel where the incident took place, and explained that he stayed downstairs and tied up the concierge while his two co-conspirators went upstairs to Kardashian’s room. He revealed that Kardashian’s secretary dialed 911 to call for help, despite being in France. “Ms Kardashian’s secretary called for help, but she called 911 in the United States which scared us, which made them lose a lot of time,” he recalled. “When we got out, there was a bunch of police outside who didn’t know anything about the robbery.”

Yabbas admitted that he was not familiar with Kardashian before the robbery, but he was aware of her then-husband Kanye West. He recalled an episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians when Kim loses her diamond earring in the ocean. “I saw one of her shows where she threw her diamond in the pool in that episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” he said. “I thought, “She’s got a lot of money. This lady doesn’t care at all.’”

When asked whether he feels any guilt for his role in the robbery, Yabbas declared that he does not feel guilty and instead blames Kardashian for flaunting her wealth on social media. “Since she was throwing money away, I was there to collect it and that was that,” he told VICE. “Guilty? No, I don’t care.”

“They should be a little less showy towards people who can’t afford it,” Yabbas added about celebrities like Kardashian. “For some people, it’s provocative.”

However, he did acknowledge that the SKIMS founder must have experienced trauma after the robbery, saying, “You don’t come out of it unscathed. We didn’t expect this. Of course she must have been traumatised. I don’t doubt it.”

Kim Kardashian has been open about the impact the Paris robbery has had on her mental health, revealing that she suffered from anxiety and agoraphobia after the attack. During a sit-down interview with David Letterman in 2020, Kardashian described the event as “seven or eight minutes of torture,” and recalled thinking she was about to be assaulted.

“He grabbed me, and pulled me towards him. But I wasn’t wearing anything underneath [my bathrobe],” she told Letterman through tears. “So I was like, ‘Okay, this is the time, I’m going to get raped. Just deal, like, it’s gonna happen.’ You know, like just prepare yourself.”

Kardashian recalled begging the concierge, who was also tied up, to tell the robbers she has young children back home, and began to imagine her sister Kourney – who was staying in the same suite as her – discovering her body when she returned to the hotel.

Abbas spent nearly two years in prison for the 2016 robbery before he was granted early release on health grounds. The robbers, many of which were in their 60s and 70s, were dubbed the “grandpa robbers” by the French media.

The Independent has contacted Kim Kardashian for comment.

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