Author Topic: Art Theft: Most Famous Cases in History  (Read 3935 times)

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Art theft is an ancient and complicated crime. When we look at some of the most famous cases of art thefts in history, is well planned operations that involve art dealers, art forgers, mobsters, ransoms, and millions of dollars. Here you can read about some of the most famous cases of art theft in history.

The first robbery
The first documented case of art theft was in 1473, when two panels of altarpiece of the Last Judgement by the Dutch painter Hans Memling were stolen. While the triptych was being transported by ship from the Netherlands to Florence, the ship was attacked by pirates who took him to the Gdansk cathedral in Poland. Today, the piece shown at the National Museum in Gdansk, where he was recently transferred from the Basilica of the Assumption.

The most famous theft:
The most famous story of art theft involves one of the world's most famous paintings and one of the most famous artists in history as a suspect. On the night of August 21, 1911, the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre. Soon after, Pablo Picasso, was arrested and questioned by police but was released quickly.

It took nearly two years until the mystery was solved by the Parisian police. It turned out that the box 30 × 21 inches was taken by an employee of the museum with the name of Vincenzo Perugia, who just took it hidden under his coat. However, Perugia did not work alone. The crime was carefully conducted by a known con man, Eduardo de Valfierno, which was sent by an art faker who intended to make copies and sell them as the original painting.

While Yves Chaudron, the art faker, was busy creating copies of the famous masterpiece, the Mona Lisa was still hidden in the apartment in Perugia. After two years in which Peruggia Chaudron not know, tried to make the best of his stolen good. Finally, Perugia was captured by police while trying to sell the painting to an art dealer from Florence, Italy. The Mona Lisa was returned to the grid in 1913.

The biggest robbery in the U.S.:
The largest art theft in the United States took place at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. On the night of March 18, 1990, a group of thieves wearing police uniformS broke into the museum and took thirteen paintings whose collective value is estimated at about $ 300 million. The thieves took two paintings and a print of Rembrandt, and works of Vermeer, Manet, Degas, Govaert Flinck, as well as a French and a Chinese artifact.

So far, none of the paintings have been found and the case is still unresolved. According to recent rumors, the FBI is investigating the possibility that the Boston Mob along with French art dealers are connected to the crime.

The cry:
Edvard Munch's painting The Scream, is probably the most sought after painting by art thieves in history. It has been stolen twice and was recently recovered. In 1994, during the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, "The Scream" was stolen from an Oslo gallery by two thieves who broke a window open, alarm and left a note saying: thanks for the lack of security.

Three months later, the owners of the painting approached the Norwegian Government with an offer: $ 1 million ransom for Edvard Munch "The Scream." The Government rejected the offer, but the Norwegian police collaborated with the British police and the Getty Museum to organize a sting operation that brought the painting to where it belongs.

Ten years later, "The Scream" was stolen again from the Munch Museum. This time, the robbers used a gun and took another Munch painting with them. While Museum officials waiting for the thieves to request ransom money, rumors claimed that both paintings were burned to conceal evidence. Finally, the Norwegian police discovered the two paintings on August 31, 2006, but the facts on how they were recovered are not known yet.




 

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