US returns $ 11 million in illegally stolen Italian antiques
Italy on Thursday hailed the return of antiques valued at nearly $ 11 million that have been illegally tampered with and sold to American museums and galleries.
U.S. authorities returned 201 artifacts earlier this month. Of these, 40 are currently on display at the Italian Consulate General and 161 have been relocated to Italy, according to the Associated Press.
“These works of art will not end up, as has happened several times in the past, in a single large museum,” Italian Minister of Culture Dario Franceschini said, according to the outlet.
He said the works will be returned to where they were stolen and will be kept and exhibited in museums in those regions, AP noted.
âIt is also a great homecoming operation that will add value to our extraordinary country as a vast museum. These are works of art of absolute importance that will attract people to these places and territories, âsaid Franceschini.
Ancient pottery, Roman art, a terracotta statue dating from the 4th century BC.
A large majority of the stolen coins turned out to be related to Italian Edoardo Almagia, who lived in New York for some time. In 2006, Italy dropped the charges against him due to the statute of limitations, but in 2013 a judge in Rome ordered the seizure of all of his antiques in New York and Naples, AP reported.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office told The Associated Press that Almagia was still on the run in Italy.