5 Year Sentence "Unfair": Jewel Thief

By Tony Shin
|  Thursday, Feb 10, 2011  |  Updated 10:09 AM PDT
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Jewelry of the Stars on View in Carlsbad

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International Jewel Thief Sent Back to Prison

She will have to watch her inspired Halle Berry movie from behind bars.
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Doris Payne admits that she is an international jewel thief who has stolen countless jewels and other expensive items in her criminal career which spans more than six decades.

She's also remorseful for taking things that didn't belong to her including an $8900 diamond ring from the Macy's in Fashion Valley in January 2010.

"I am very sorry,"Payne said during an interview at Vista Detention Center shortly after she was sentenced to the maximum of five years in prison.  She called it "unfair."

"I should have gotten probation,"said Payne about her sentencing. 

Payne believes she was given the maximum because the prosecutor painted her as a media hungry thief who boasted about her noteriety.

"I never gloated about what I did," Payne said about the attention she has gotten over the years.

A book deal about her life story is in the works and Halle Berry is slated to portray her in an upcoming film.

"I wanted Queen Latifah to play me," she said.

During the interview, Payne got emotional when she talked about going back to prison.

She said she may not survive long because she suffers from a serious lung disease.

"I'm not afraid, it won't be a situation where I suffer because I go into respiratory failure with this and it's a quick thing,"Payne said.

Her attorney Gretchen Von Helms is filing an appeal and Payne is hoping it'll help her avoid going to prison, at least in the immediate future.

"I'm sure the judge would give me an appeal bail and let me go get medical attention,"Payne said.

When asked if she would ever steal again, Payne said her career as an international jewel thief was over.

"I just want to get my book deal done, so I can start a battered women's shelter,"Payne said.

She said her mother was a victim of domestic violence and she wants to help other victims.

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