The Most Elaborate Crimes With The Most Frustrating Loose Ends

List Rules
Vote up the cases you most want to see solved.

Who doesn't love a good heist movie - where the thieves rappel in from the ceiling and take millions of dollars of goods in mere minutes? 

Well, it turns out that history can be even more interesting than fiction when it comes to famous crimes. From nine-figure diamond hauls to parachuting from a moving plane, it seems criminals have tried just about everything to get their hands on stolen treasures. 

And while the misdeeds on this list were all expertly planned out, there are aspects of each story that leave us scratching our heads. Several of these infamous crimes led to indictments of the alleged perpetrators, but their stolen goods remain lost; in other cases, even the identities of the criminals are still unknown. Vote up the cases you'd most like to see resolved.


  • 1
    240 VOTES

    The Tucker's Cross Theft

    Date: 1975

    Location: Bermuda Maritime Museum, Bermuda

    Crime: In 1955, legendary diver Teddy Tucker found a shipwreck just off the coast of Bermuda. Upon further investigation (and after finding several gold and silver pieces), Tucker discovered that this was the remnants of the San Pedro of the Spanish treasure fleet, which was wrecked in 1594.

    The most impressive piece among the salvaged treasure was Tucker's Cross, a 22-karat gold cross, encrusted with seven emeralds.

    Rather than sell the cross for its valued $200,000 on the open market, Tucker sold the cross to the Bermuda government for half the price - hoping it would stay on the island and draw visitors. 

    The cross became the crown jewel of the island's museums, and was even the centerpiece for Queen Elizabeth II's visit in 1975. 

    As Tucker went to move the cross to a better location, he discovered that the original had been replaced by an intricate plaster copy. Since the cross hadn't been moved for five years, there was little evidence found by authorities. 

    Today, Tucker's Cross is valued at $2 million.

    240 votes
  • Date: November 24, 1971

    Location: Midair between Portland, OR, and Seattle, WA

    Crime: A quiet man who called himself Dan Cooper bought a one-way flight from Portland to Seattle. Midair, he showed a flight attendant a bomb inside his briefcase, and ordered her to take a note to the pilot - demanding four parachutes and $200,000 in cash

    After landing in Seattle, the 36 passengers were exchanged for the parachutes and money. Cooper held several crew members captive on board, and they then took off for Mexico City.

    Somewhere between Seattle and Reno, in the middle of the night, the hijacker jumped out the back of the plane with the parachutes and cash. 

    To this day, the true identity of Cooper has never been proven. However, the FBI hypothesizes that he may have perished upon impact in the wooded area, citing the fact that a boy found a package of cash in 1980 matching the ransom money's serial numbers.

    However, D.B. Cooper is still alive and well in pop culture, appearing as the alter ego of Loki Laufeyson in a 2021 episode of Disney's Loki

    353 votes
  • The Zodiac Killer's Identity And Unbreakable Cipher
    Photo: San Francisco Police Department / Wikimedia Commons / Public domain

    Date: December 1968 to October 1969

    Location: Bay Area, CA, USA

    Crime: The Zodiac Killer has become one of the most infamous serial killers in America, partially due to the lack of suspects in the case.

    Over the span of 11 months, the Zodiac Killer murdered five people, wounding two more. Throughout the period of the crime spree, the killer rose to national fame through letters he wrote to regional newspapers. Threatening more violence if they weren't printed, the letters contain bizarre phrases and cryptograms, several of which still haven't been solved to this day. 

    In October 2021, a group of former law enforcement investigators known as the Case Breakers claimed they found the culprit, and that he was also responsible for the 1966 slaying of Cheri Jo Bates. 

    The FBI, however, states that the case remains open. 

    253 votes
  • The Irish Crown Jewels Heist
    Photo: Dublin Police / Wikimedia Commons / Public domain
    245 VOTES

    The Irish Crown Jewels Heist

    Date: July 6, 1907

    Location: Dublin Castle, Dublin, Ireland

    Crime: In 1907, Dublin Castle was one of the most impenetrable fortresses in Ireland. It acted as the headquarters for the Dublin Metropolitan Police, as well as many other police and military workers. 

    For this reason, it was decided that the Irish Crown Jewels would be stored here. While a strong room was built, it was discovered that the safe was too large to get through the door - so the safe was instead kept in a library. There were only two keys to the safe, both held by Ulster King of Arms, Sir Arthur Vicars. 

    It's been said that Vicars was rather careless with his key, with stories of him handing it off to people after drunken nights out. 

    On the morning of July 6, a maid discovered that the door to the strong room was open. The door to the library was still locked - but the keys were in the lock. Vicars didn't seem too worried though, and he didn't bother to check on the jewels.

    It wasn't until much later in the day - when they went to place something else in the safe - that it was discovered the prized jewels were gone. 

    No suspects were ever charged, and it's been rumored that the investigation uncovered a lot of "unseemly" behavior, which may have led to the case being dropped. 

    Today, the Irish Crown Jewels would be worth approximately $20 million

    245 votes
  • The Break-In At The Singer Laren Museum During The COVID-19 Quarantine
    Photo: Vincent Van Gogh / Wikimedia Commons / Public domain
    202 VOTES

    The Break-In At The Singer Laren Museum During The COVID-19 Quarantine

    Date: March 30, 2020

    Location: Singer Laren Museum, Laren, Netherlands

    Crime: Much like the rest of the world, the Singer Laren Museum closed its doors in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

    Thieves took this closure as an opportunity to break the glass front door in the middle of the night, escaping before the police could get to the scene. 

    The criminals stole only one itemThe Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring, a painting by the Netherlands' own Vincent Van Gogh.

    The Van Gogh painting is valued at over $6 million. There are no leads at this time in the investigation. 

    202 votes
  • The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Robbery
    Photo: Rembrandt / Wikimedia Commons / Public domain

    Date: March 18, 1990

    Location: Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, MA 

    Crime: At approximately 1 am, two men dressed as police officers arrived at the museum. They stated they were there for a disturbance call, and the guard let them in (breaking protocol). 

    Soon, the two guards were tied up, and the pair of criminals went on a stealing spree - cutting and removing priceless paintings from their frames. 

    These artworks - including paintings by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Degas, and Manet - have yet to be found. The value of the 13 stolen works of art totals more than $500 million, and there is still a $10 million reward for information leading to the recovery of the art. 

    While we have no answer as to who committed this crime now, a lead may be developing: A mobster who was thought to be connected to the crime - Robert Gentile - passed in September 2021. Investigators are hopeful that his demise may lead to someone speaking up, or the artwork getting passed along.

    201 votes