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Australian police X-ray alleged diamond thief

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February 20, 2014 10:49 PM EST | AP


CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australian police searching for a stolen 200,000 Australian dollar ($180,000) rare pink diamond have X-rayed a British tourist suspected to have swallowed it.

The diamond was snatched from a jewelry store in the northern Australia city of Cairns last weekend by a man who escaped on a bicycle. Police were able to identify the suspect from closed-circuit TV and finger prints.

Police say they arrested a 29-year-old Briton on Thursday as he attempted to board a flight to New Zealand from an airport in the southern city of Melbourne.

Senior Sergeant Greg Giles told Australian Broadcasting Corp. Friday that police have yet to recover the cut diamond, and suspected the tourist swallowed it. But X-rays were inconclusive.

The man is to appear in a Cairns court on theft charges.