But the celebrities could still take the stand if any of the members of the Bling Ring go to trial. The five remaining defendants had been previously charged and the actors’ grand jury testimony eliminated the need for a preliminary hearing.
The testimony led to indictments for felony residential burglary against Nicholas Frank Prugo, Rachel Lee, Roy Lopez Jr., Courtney Leigh Ames and Diana Tamayo. All five pleaded not guilty on July 2 and are due back in court on Sept. 20 for a pretrial conference.
Many of the details of the actual break-ins given to the grand jury have been revealed in search warrants and other court filings, but most of the stars have refrained from talking publicly about their losses.
Lohan’s testimony came during a turbulent streak in her life. Her appearance on June 18 occurred about two weeks before a judge handling her criminal case sentenced the “Mean Girls” star to jail for a probation violation.
For 40 minutes, Lohan described coming home with her sister early last August to find her rented house in complete disarray.
“My front door wasn’t locked, and it usually always was,” Lohan said. “My alarm didn’t sound, and I usually had to turn it off. And everything that I had was kind of thrown, and everything was pretty much disheveled.”
A fur coat, two paintings and other high-end jewelry and clothing were missing. When Lohan stepped into her closet, she told jurors, she saw her safe had been moved and black fingerprints were on her white walls.
She said that after she packed up what she had left, she never returned to that house. “I don’t ever plan on going back to that house,” she said. “It was like, such an invasion of privacy, and it’s just eerie.”
Bloom, who estimated his losses at half a million dollars or more, said he immediately suspected he’d been robbed by a close friend or someone who worked for him.
“It’s just awful because you are suddenly second-guessing everything,” Bloom told the jury. “You are like, ‘Who has been in my house?’ You know, the value of things kind of fades away. It’s really about who is it, who am I starting to question?”
The “Pirates of the Caribbean” star said only some of his items _ mostly clothes and one of his prized watches _ was ever returned. He testified that clothing of his then-girlfriend, model Miranda Kerr, was also stolen. Bloom and Kerr have since married.
His house, which one detective likened to the “Bat Cave” because it couldn’t be seen from the street or the air, was targeted in July 2009.
Authorities estimate that there is at least $2 million of the stars’ property that has not been recovered. They suspect that Lee, one of the group’s alleged masterminds, may have hidden the goods before her arrest at her father’s home in Las Vegas.
Lee allegedly offered to return some of the stolen property to detectives in exchange for leniency, according to transcripts and other court filings.
A Louis Vuitton bag full of jewelry was returned to Paris Hilton after several alleged members of the group were arrested in October.View Entire Story
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