Robbers Grab $9.5M in Jewels From Armored Cars Authorities in France say holdup took place at toll booth By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Mar 11, 2015 1:02 PM CDT 8 comments Comments Burnt-out armored vehicles stand near the Avallon motorway exit, central France, Wednesday. (AP Photo) (Newser) – Finesse can help in a jewel heist, but brute force is handy, too. Police in France say about two dozen "heavily armed and battled-hardened" robbers attacked two armored cars at a highway toll booth, securing a payday of $9.5 million in jewels, reports the Guardian. Not a single shot was fired in the midnight heist near Auxerre. The robbers let the drivers go and drove off with the vans, whose burnt-out shells were found nearby. The AP says the caper bears the hallmarks of the Pink Panther gang, which has made off with hundreds of millions in thefts over the last 15 years.