Culture crime news 29 October–4 November 2018


Hot this week: After a Warhol theft in Illinois

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Are the principles set out for identifying Nazi-looted art fit for purpose?
(29 October 2018; Apollo)

Unearthing museum fakes is critical for setting the historical record straight
(2 November 2018; Lighthouse)


Bronze decorations stolen from Fayoum mosque door: Antiquities ministry (Egypt)
(29 October 2018; Ahram Online)

Saqqara police arrests 4 people attempting to sell ancient coffin (Egypt)
(30 October 2018; Egypt Today)

Will the London obelisk return to Egypt? (Egypt)
(31 October 2018; Egypt Independent)

Vandalism and Neglect Haunt Libya’s Ancient Heritage Sites (Libya)
(1 November 2018; Epoch Times)

Obaseki rallies EU museums, others for return of Benin stolen artefacts (Nigeria)
(26 October 2018; Vanguard)


Quest for a stolen totem: Regina woman unravels Second World War mystery (Canada)
(1 November 2018; CBC)

Callao: delincuente se persigna ante Señor de los Milagros y roba cáliz de parroquia (Callao: Delenquent crosses self in front of Señor de los Milagros and steals church chalice; Peru)
(2 November 2018; La República)

Looters steal vintage firearms from Aberdeen Museum of History ashes (USA)
(30 October 2018; KIRO)

Rival auction houses to share research as authenticity of painting hangs in the balance (USA)
(3 November 2018; The Telegraph)

Bulger And The Gardner Heist — A Lot Of Speculation, And Very Little Evidence (USA)
(31 October 2018; WBUR)

Murdered mob boss gave stolen Boston art to IRA, says former Met detective (USA)
(4 November 2018; The Guardian)

City gets $750,000 insurance settlement for 2016 theft of 7 Warhol prints from museum (USA)
(27 October 2018; Springfield News-Leader)

Springfield Art Museum added 99 works to collection in 2018. It says it can protect them (USA)
(2 November 2018; Springfield News-Leader)

After $31 Million Sale of 3,000-Year-Old Assyrian Relief, Experts and Artists Denounce Christie’s (USA, Iraq)
(2 November 2018; Hyperallergic)

Record-Setting Sale Of An Ancient Assyrian Stone Relief Sparks Looting Fears In Iraq (USA, Iraq)
(4 November 2018; NPR)


Finnish couple jailed over 13m euro art forgery scam (Finland)
(31 October 2018; Dunya News)

Pierre Bergé’s Foundation Withdraws a Mysterious Painting the Fashion Mogul Once Attributed to Manet From Its Sale at Sotheby’s (France)
(31 October 2018; ArtNet News)

A Family Recovered Most of What the Nazis Stole. But Not This. (Germany)
(31 October 2018; The New York Times)

Man arrested in central Athens over ancient artifact (Greece)
(3 November 2018; eKathimerini)

Dutch Nazi art probe rejects Kandinsky claim (Netherlands)
(2 November 2018; France 24)

Franco’s tomb defaced in Spain with red dove painting (Spain)
(31 October 2018; France 24)

¿Cómo parar los expolios en las iglesias y ermitas sorianas? (How to stop the looting of the churches and hermitages of Soria; Spain)
(2 November 2018; Soria Noticias)

Fife antiques dealer accused of selling Jack Vettriano painting `worth £1000′ for £17,000 (UK)
(31 October 2018; The Courier)

Ministry of Defence accused of ‘failing to save First World War submarines from looters’ (UK, Netherlands)
(3 November 2018; The Daily Mail)

South and East Asia

A group of Chinese villagers traveled to Amsterdam to ask for the return of a mummified monk (China, Netherlands)
(1 November 2018; Quartz)

Viral video of Rajasthan temple robbery being circulated as `theft at Jain temple in Navi Mumbai’ (India)
(29 October 2018; Local Press Co)

Seized idols dumped in the open (India)
(30 October 2018; The Hindu)

Uttar Pradesh: Idols of Ram, Laxman, Janki stolen from temple in Mau (India)
(31 October 2018; OpIndia)

1 held for theft of temple idols (India)
(1 November 2018; The Hindu)

Antique idols stolen from temple (India)
(3 November 2018; United News of India)

Thailand hopefully to get back over 60 looted Thai artworks from overseas (Thailand)
(1 November 2018; The Nation)

West and Central Asia

Dead Sea Scroll Fakes Abound, and Scholars Admit They Share the Blame (Palestine, Israel, USA)
(28 October 2018; Haaretz)

Forced to Close by Civil War, the National Museum of Damascus Re-Opens Its Doors (Syria)
(30 October 2018; Smithsonian)