As Kim Kardashian reunited with Kanye West in New York after being robbed at gunpoint in Paris, her former security guard said the jewellery heist was "a crime waiting to happen".
The 35-year-old and her rapper husband were surrounded by dozens of security guards and police officers as they darted inside their Manhattan apartment on Monday afternoon.
Kardashian was pictured without her engagement ring on her finger, prompting fears it might have been stolen in the raid.
The Kardashian was said to have been hysterical when she called West after the attack.
The Daily News reported that she was so inconsolable that at first West couldn't understand what she was saying over the phone.
The reality star broke the disturbing news to West in a trans-Atlantic call shortly after the terrifying ordeal.
"Kim was terrified," an insider close to the rapper told the magazine.
"She was just hysterical when she talked to Kanye. He said she was really upset and it took him a few seconds to understand what she was saying to him."
The reality TV star fled France just hours after she was tied up and held at gunpoint by thieves dressed as cops who stole around $14 million in jewellery, and two smartphones, from her room at the exclusive Hotel de Pourtalès about 3am Monday local time.
Two of the five robbers entered the apartment after threatening the night guard of the hotel with a hand gun and then restraining him.
The five attackers were wearing ski masks and clothes with police markings.
The robbers zip-tied Kardashian's hands with plastic handcuffs, duct-taped her mouth and ankles, dumping her in the bathtub, TMZ reported. The star told police that she feared she was about to be raped, the website said.
The robbers allegedly kept saying "ring, ring" and Kardashian told them where to find a new ring she got from her husband - a photograph of which she posted to social media last Friday.
When the thieves left with "all her jewellery", Kardashian "broke out of her bindings and got out," the source told E! News.
E! News, whose US network broadcasts the Keeping Up With the Kardashians, quoted a source close to Kardashian as saying she feared for her life.
"She begged for them to let her live and (said) she has babies at home ... She thought they were for sure going to kill her," the unidentified source told
Investigators say the assailants may have fled on bicycles.
Kardashian, who has two young children with West, was not beaten but the star was "badly shaken" after the attack.
Included in the robbers stash of stolen jewellery was a ring worth about $5.7 million, the Paris police source said. Many suspect it was her engagement ring.
French police are now questioning a photographer who posed as a police officer to spy on Kardashian in a restaurant earlier in the week, The Sun reports. The snapper's identity has not been released.
Kardashian was in the country for Paris Fashion Week, alongside mother Kris Jenner and sisters Kourtney Kardashian and Kendall Jenner.
Heist 'was a crime waiting to happen'
Kardashian's bodyguard, Pascal Duvier, has come under fire for not being with Kardashian during her nightmarish ordeal. He was reportedly with her two sisters as they partied at a nightclub.
Steve Stanulis, who provided security for Kimye during New York Fashion Week in February for 10 days, and worked with them again around the Met Gala in May, claims the heist was an inside job.
"This was a crime waiting to happen. Kim is lucky to be alive," he told The New York Post.
"I would say it's either an inside job or publicity stunt. That hotel is so secure, somebody must have tipped them off that she was alone inside, or shown them a way in."
Stanulis, who was sacked by West for allegedly getting too close to his wife, said his former bosses don't take their security as seriously as they should.
"When I worked with them, Kanye would ask me to walk 10 feet behind him, which makes it so hard for anyone working their security to do anything if someone lunges at them.
There was numerous times he'd try to ditch his security. He'd jump in a car and tell me to take a taxi," he said.
He continued: "They need to pay for an armed security guard. She almost got killed at gunpoint, because she didn't want to pay for an extra armed and well-trained person. It takes one minute of dialogue to figure out if someone really is a cop, they should not have got in the building.
Yep we were really taking selfies the whole time and they are all up on my app! Link is in my bio. KimKardashianWest.com A photo posted by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on Aug 2, 2016 at 9:01am PDT
SHARE THIS QUOTE:
"Sadly, the only person to blame for this incident, is Kim Kardashian. She has tens of millions of dollars of jewellery, but she can't pay for an armed guard to protect her? The fact that five days ago that someone broke through her security chain and tried to grab her, then this happened, shows her security is not strong enough, and this should be a wake-up call."
He said Kardashian brought the robbery on herself: "Kim's social media and her Snapchat is her undoing. When she is posting, 'Here I am, and this is the $5 million ring I am wearing, here's where I am going', you are basically inviting someone to rob you."