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Diamond Merchant Passes Out In Restroom, Loses $1.2 Million In Gems

May 18, 1989

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ A gem dealer passed out in a public restroom after having several drinks at an airport bar, and when he came to his briefcase containing $1.2 million in diamonds was missing, police said.

Philip Pilikyan, 39, of New York, was discovered in a restroom at Los Angeles International Airport late Tuesday, said airport police Lt. Ruben Martinez.

Police Detective Comie Scales said Pilikyan had four drinks, felt lightheaded and went to the restroom where he lost consciousness.

″He experienced shortness of breath and passed out,″ Scales said.

Pilikyan was taken to Daniel Freeman Marina Hospital for treatment, and called police early Wednesday to report the briefcase and diamonds missing.

″He realized they were gone at the hospital,″ said police Lt. Ross Moen. ″His last recollection is that he had the briefcase with him. He said he did not leave it anywhere.″

Police said Pilikyan reported the briefcase contained loose diamonds weighing 2,500 carats and valued at $1.2 million.

Pilikyan, a merchant for the New York-based Yankee Yaniv Diamonds Corp., told police he had shown the diamonds at the downtown Jewelry Mart earlier in the day before heading to the airport to catch a flight.

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