updated 8/10/2009 2:03:31 PM ET 2009-08-10T18:03:31

Italian police said Monday they are hunting for burglars who stole $15.5 million in cash and jewelry from the hotel room of a Saudi princess.

Police said the princess was not in her room at the luxury Colonna Pevero Hotel in Porto Cervo, a glitzy resort on the island of Sardinia, when the robbers struck.

The thieves used a master key to gain access, then ripped out the wall safe.

Police in the nearby town of Olbia declined to say whether they believed the robbery was an inside job.

Officials did not publicly identify the princess. Calls seeking comment from the hotel management were not returned.

The seaside village of Porto Cervo is a main resort on Sardinia's Costa Smeralda, or Emerald Coast. The area is a magnet for the yachts of millionaires and is dotted with villas owned by the rich and powerful, including Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi.

Italian media reported that robbers in recent days also have targeted a Moroccan businessman staying at a nearby hotel as well as seaside private villas.

Law enforcement agencies held a summit Monday in Porto Cervo to discuss the investigation and security improvements.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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