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Two people were killed today at Santiago International Airport during a botched robbery of an armored van that was to pick up $32.5 million from Miami.

The money was being flown by a Latam aircraft and was due to be picked up by local security services firm Brinks when armed robbers tried to grab it. Police officers intervened and pushed them away, said the prosecutor Eduardo Baesa, who has taken over the investigation of the case.

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An employee of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGAC) and one of the attackers were killed in the ensuing exchange of fire.

The robbers, ten in total according to the authorities, arrived at the airport at 7.30am in three vehicles. They forced open a gate and reached the airport zone where the armored van was parked, waiting to collect the money. The security guards surprised them and the assailants left after setting fire to two of the vehicles in which they had arrived in the area.

Interior Minister Manuel Monsalve told reporters that the attackers entered the airport after first tying up a security guard. “There was a fierce exchange of fire,” the minister said, stressing that the guards “prevented a robbery by well-organized and heavily armed” thugs.

In recent years there have been other robberies of large sums of money from the Arturo Merino Benites airport in the Chilean capital. In 2017 a group of armed men grabbed more than 18 million dollars while three years later robbers stole 15 million dollars from an armored van.