Suspects who held Kim Kardashian at gunpoint in hotel jewellery heist to go on trial in France

Twelve people will stand trial in Paris over a $10m jewellery heist targeting Kim Kardashian West in 2016, authorities said on Friday.

The reality TV star was tied up at gunpoint and locked in a bathroom after armed robbers forced their way into her rented Paris apartment during Fashion Week.

Five years on, investigating judges have ordered the case sent to trial, a judicial official said on Friday.

The 12 suspects face a range of charges related to the theft. No trial date has been set, and the official would not provide further details.

Ms Kardashian West’s French lawyer did not immediately comment to the Associated Press.

Several suspects have been released from jail pending trial for health reasons including 68-year-old Yunice Abbas, one of the five men accused of carrying out the heist. He published a book about the incident last year.

The alleged mastermind, Aomar Ait Khedache, had written Ms Kardashian West an apology letter from his prison cell, saying that he regrets his actions and realises the psychological damage he caused.

The incident took place in October 2016. Two armed men in masks and disguised as police officers, held the reality star at gunpoint. A spokesperson said that Ms Kardashian West was “badly shaken up” but remained “physically unharmed”.

The robbers held a gun to Ms Kardashian West’s head, tied her up and locked her in the bathroom, before making off with the jewels. They are believed to have then fled the scene on bicycles.

Ms Kardashian West was attending Fashion Week in the French capital with her mother Kris Jenner and sisters Kendall Jenner and Kourtney Kardashian.

Her husband, Kanye West, was performing at The Meadows Music and Arts Festival in Queens, New York when he heard the news. He abruptly ended his show by telling fans he needed to leave for a family emergency.

“I’m sorry. Family emergency,” West said while cutting his performance of “Heartless” short. “I have to stop the show.”

Earlier this year, Ms Kardashian West revealed that she felt like she had agoraphobia after the incident.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, agoraphobia is an “anxiety disorder that involves intense fear and anxiety of any place or situation where escape might be difficult”, and can involve “avoidance of situations such as being alone outside of the home; traveling in a car, bus, or airplane; or being in a crowded area”.

In the final season of Keeping Up With The Kardashians, she told her sister Khloe Kardashian: “I feel like I had agoraphobia definitely after my robbery in Paris. Like definitely would stay in, hated to go out, I didn’t want anybody to know where I was and didn’t want to be seen. I just had such anxiety.”

Ms Kardashian West said that the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic saw those feelings return and worsen.

In a reunion episode of the show, she told host Andy Cohen that even five years later she cannot sleep with items of great value in her home, for fear of being robbed again.

“As far as jewellery, if I’m wearing something, it’s borrowed. It’s fake,” she revealed. “I can’t sleep if I have jewellery in my safe, or money, or anything at my house. I just don’t live my life like that.”

“The things I valued before that happened were genuinely completely different than what I value now. It’s fun to get dressed up and all this, but like, [material] things don’t make me,” she added.

With reporting by the Associated Press

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