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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Stolen Art Watch, Art Crime Snapshot March 2014


Rembrandt Recovered in Southern France

PARIS — Investigators have announced the recovery of a Rembrandt painting 15 years after it was stolen from a museum in Southeastern France in the midst of a passing military parade.
An unidentified man, 43, claimed responsibility last week for the theft, according to the police. He said that it took place in the municipal museum in Draguignan during a break-in timed to a Bastille Day parade that masked the sound of security alarms. He turned himself into police in Southern France last Wednesday, a day after detectives arrested two men in Nice as they tried to sell the stolen painting, the Dutch master’s “Child With a Soap Bubble, ” which is valued at more than 3.2 million euros or almost five million dollars.
Investigators were tipped off by an art dealer who realized that the painting was listed as stolen from the museum of Draguignan. The painting has been returned to the museum.
In a separate case in Serbia last week, local authorities arrested four men and retrieved a Rembrandt painting that had been stolen by masked gunmen in 2006 from the City Museum in Novi Sad. “The Portrait of a Father,” painted in 1630, was stolen once before in 1996 and recovered in Spain. It was one of three paintings, including a Rubens, that was stolen from the Serbian museum.

Stolen Rembrandt painting recovered after 15 years

Colonel Stephane Goffenito with Rembrandt's painting Child with a Soap Bubble  
The recovered painting has been shown to the press

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A 17th Century painting by Dutch master Rembrandt has been recovered in France, 15 years after it was stolen.
L'enfant a la bulle de savon (Child with soap bubble), valued at 3.2m euros (£2.7m), was taken from a museum in the southern city of Draguignan in 1999.
Two men were arrested in Nice on Tuesday, according to the Agence France Presse (AFP) news agency.
Police said they received information that a transaction was due to take place in a hotel the following day.
The men, aged 46 and 53, one of whom was described as a former insurer, appeared in court in Nice on Thursday, AFP said.
They were reported to be known to police for previous petty crimes. Police are still looking for other suspects.
Rembrandt's painting Child with a Soap Bubble  
The painting measures 60cm by 49cm and was said to be in a good condition
The painting was stolen from Draguignan's Musee Municipal d'art et d'histoire during the city's Bastille Day celebrations in July 1999.
At the time, police said the thieves entered through a back door and escaped before officers responded to the alarm.
The undated painting, which portrays a teenage boy with long dark brown locks, wearing a golden necklace and holding a soap bubble, was said to be in a good condition.

Stolen items returned to Petworth House


JPEt Petworth House ENGSUS00320131126100654

A detective returned a selection of antiques to Petworth House this week, after a prolific thief from London was jailed for stealing them.
The pair of Japanese plates - together with a Derby porcelain plaque from Clandon Park - were recovered from a pawn broker in Hatton Gardens, London.
Paul Whiting, 68, originally from Hammersmith in London, appeared at Guildford Crown Court on February 6 where he was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment for the theft of two Japanese plates from Petworth in February 2012 and a porcelain plaque from Clandon Park in May 2013.
The sentence is to run concurrent to a sentence he is already serving for a theft at a National Trust property in Hertfordshire.
A key piece of evidence to convict Whiting came from CCTV images of the 68 year old when he took the porcelain plaque to Bonhams Auctioneers in New Bond Street for a valuation.
John Sandon and Fergus Gambon of The Antiques Roadshow fame, were working that day at the auctioneers and carried out an inspection of the item.
A few days later, Mr Sandon read an article in The Antique Trade Gazette regarding the theft of the plaque from Clandon Park and recognised the piece as being the one he had recently examined.
CCTV was produced from Bonhams of the meeting and circulated to other police forces. An officer from Hertfordshire saw the stills and recognised Whiting as someone he had arrested for a burglary at a National Trust House in West Wycombe Park in June 2013.
Officers from Surrey Police interviewed Whiting in prison and subsequently charged him with the two burglaries.
Andrew Loukes, House and Collections Manager at Petworth said: “The National Trust at Petworth are delighted to have the Japanese dishes back, and are very grateful to Surrey and West Sussex Police Forces for all their efforts.
“We are also pleased that our own CCTV coverage was able to link Whiting with the theft from Petworth.”

300 rings stolen during raid at Honiton jewellers


Banwell Antiques in Honiton High Street.
Police are investigating a robbery at a jewellers shop in Honiton.
A lone man attacked a female worker at Banwell Antiques in the High Street as she opened the store at 9am this morning.
The suspect got away with more than 300 rings, pendants and earrings.
He's described as white, of slim build, heavily unshaven, with short dark hair, and aged between 30 – 50 years. He was wearing a blue coat, blue denim jeans, black trainers, a beige coloured flat cap and was carrying a blue rucksack.
The victim is shaken but unhurt.

Police return stolen antiques to National Trust Houses

A detective from Surrey Police had the enjoyable task of returning a selection of antiques to National Trust Properties this week which had been stolen by a prolific thief from London.
The items, a Derby Porcelain Plaque and two Japanese Plates were recovered from a pawn broker in Hatton Gardens, London having been stolen from Clandon Park, Guildford and Petworth House in West Sussex.
Paul Whiting, 68 years, originally from Hammersmith, London appeared at Guildford Crown Court on 6 February 2014 where he was sentenced to twelve months imprisonment for the theft of the porcelain plaque from Clandon Park in May 2013 and the theft of two Japanese Plates from Petworth in February 2012. The sentence is to run concurrent to a sentence he is already serving for a theft at a National Trust property in Hertfordshire.
A key piece of evidence to convict Whiting came from CCTV images of the 68 year old when he took the porcelain plaque to Bonhams Auctioneers in New Bond Street for a valuation. John Sandon and Fergus Gambon of The Antiques Roadshow fame, were working that day at the Auctioneers and carried out an inspection of the item. A few days later, Mr Sandon read an article in The Antique Trade Gazette regarding the theft of the plaque from Clandon Park and recognised the piece as being the one he had recently examined. CCTV was produced from Bonhams of the meeting and circulated to other police forces. An officer from Hertfordshire saw the stills and recognised Whiting as someone he had arrested for a burglary at a National Trust House in West Wycombe Park in June 2013. Officers from Surrey Police interviewed Whiting in prison and subsequently charged him with the two burglaries.
DC Dave Pellatt from Surrey Police CID said: "Whiting is a prolific antiques thief who has caused a great deal of heartache and inconvenience to all those affected by his offending. I'm really pleased that we have been able to recover the stolen items and it's equally satisfying to know that he is now behind bars for a lengthy period.”
Caroline Sones, House Manager atClandonParksaid: "Last year staff and volunteers at Clandon were saddened when this beautifulDerbyporcelain plaque was stolen. We are delighted that officers from Surrey Police have recovered it for us and can't wait to have it on display again. The National Trust is one ofEurope's largest conservation charities and looks after historic collections forever for everyone. People come from near and far to enjoyClandonPark's collections of textiles, furniture and ceramics, representing the best in 18th century craftsmanship, in a grand English country house."
Andrew Loukes, House and Collections Manager at Petworth added: "The National Trust at Petworth are delighted to have the Japanese dishes back, and are very grateful to Surrey and West Sussex Police Forces for all their efforts. We are also pleased that our own CCTV coverage was able to link Whiting with the theft from Petworth.”
- See more at: http://www.surrey.police.uk/news/news-stories/full-news-story/article/9013/police-return-stolen-antiques-to-national-trust-houses#sthash.M0xuDPNu.dpuf

Police return stolen antiques to National Trust Houses

A detective from Surrey Police had the enjoyable task of returning a selection of antiques to National Trust Properties this week which had been stolen by a prolific thief from London.
The items, a Derby Porcelain Plaque and two Japanese Plates were recovered from a pawn broker in Hatton Gardens, London having been stolen from Clandon Park, Guildford and Petworth House in West Sussex.
Paul Whiting, 68 years, originally from Hammersmith, London appeared at Guildford Crown Court on 6 February 2014 where he was sentenced to twelve months imprisonment for the theft of the porcelain plaque from Clandon Park in May 2013 and the theft of two Japanese Plates from Petworth in February 2012. The sentence is to run concurrent to a sentence he is already serving for a theft at a National Trust property in Hertfordshire.
A key piece of evidence to convict Whiting came from CCTV images of the 68 year old when he took the porcelain plaque to Bonhams Auctioneers in New Bond Street for a valuation. John Sandon and Fergus Gambon of The Antiques Roadshow fame, were working that day at the Auctioneers and carried out an inspection of the item. A few days later, Mr Sandon read an article in The Antique Trade Gazette regarding the theft of the plaque from Clandon Park and recognised the piece as being the one he had recently examined. CCTV was produced from Bonhams of the meeting and circulated to other police forces. An officer from Hertfordshire saw the stills and recognised Whiting as someone he had arrested for a burglary at a National Trust House in West Wycombe Park in June 2013. Officers from Surrey Police interviewed Whiting in prison and subsequently charged him with the two burglaries.
DC Dave Pellatt from Surrey Police CID said: "Whiting is a prolific antiques thief who has caused a great deal of heartache and inconvenience to all those affected by his offending. I'm really pleased that we have been able to recover the stolen items and it's equally satisfying to know that he is now behind bars for a lengthy period.”
Caroline Sones, House Manager atClandonParksaid: "Last year staff and volunteers at Clandon were saddened when this beautifulDerbyporcelain plaque was stolen. We are delighted that officers from Surrey Police have recovered it for us and can't wait to have it on display again. The National Trust is one ofEurope's largest conservation charities and looks after historic collections forever for everyone. People come from near and far to enjoyClandonPark's collections of textiles, furniture and ceramics, representing the best in 18th century craftsmanship, in a grand English country house."
Andrew Loukes, House and Collections Manager at Petworth added: "The National Trust at Petworth are delighted to have the Japanese dishes back, and are very grateful to Surrey and West Sussex Police Forces for all their efforts. We are also pleased that our own CCTV coverage was able to link Whiting with the theft from Petworth.”
- See more at: http://www.surrey.police.uk/news/news-stories/full-news-story/article/9013/police-return-stolen-antiques-to-national-trust-houses#sthash.M0xuDPNu.dpuf

Elderly couple, accomplice held for antiques theft

An elderly couple and an acquaintance have been arrested for stealing antique jewellery items and currency notes worth a few lakhs of rupees from a resident in South Mumbai's Peddar Road area.
The Gamdevi police have managed to recover all the 58 currency notes, which date back to the period of the British rule in India. They said the jewellery stolen is worth Rs17 lakh and they have found some of the items.
The three accused, Deepak Sambare, 63, his wife Smita, 61, and Aryan Patel, 28, have been booked for theft and criminal breach of trust under sections of the Indian Penal Code.
Deepak and Smita are real estate brokers who got to know Neeta Jhaveri in December last year, said Rajaram Prabhu, senior police inspector.
During their visits to Jhaveri's house in Sonarika building, the 65-year-old lady talked to them about her interest in collecting antique jewellery and currency notes, and she even showed them these items.
"She also told them that she wanted to sell the items. So, some days later, the Sambares sent Aryan Patel to her house, introducing him as an antique dealer," the police inspector said.
Jhaveri showed Patel the currency notes and the jewellery. Then he asked her for some water to drink and when she left the room he stepped out of the house with the items.
Jhaveri called the Sambares to tell them what had happened, but they did not answer her calls. Realizing that she was cheated, the woman's son lodged a complaint with the Gamdevi police on February 22.
The police located the three by tracking their phone calls. The Sambare couple were caught near Charni Road station on March 10 and Patel, a resident of Mira Road, was apprehended a couple of days ago.
"It's evident that the Sambares were involved with Patel in the crime. We have recovered the album containing the antique currency notes and some of the jewellery from them," the police official said 
Emil Nolde, Church Altarpiece, stolen
Emil Nolde Church Altarpiece Worth £1m Stolen In Denmark - ArtLyst Article image

Emil Nolde Church Altarpiece Worth £1m Stolen In Denmark

A Church altarpiece painted  by the German / Danish artist Emil Nolde (1867-1956) has been stolen from a church in Denmark. The work of art titled, Christ at Emmaus, painted in1904, was situated in the Ølstrup Church near Ringkøbing, in western Jutland, Denmark.

The masterpiece was found to be missing by the church’s verger on 11 March, Poul Madsen a spokesperson for the Ringkøbing police, stated but it was unclear whether the artwork was taken the previous day. “Churches are unattended at night and even in the day there is often no one there" the police added. "They are places where you have a lot of time on your own,” Madsen said. There wasn't evidence of a break-in and it is thought the robbery may have happened during the day while the church was open to everyone.

“We never thought of our church as an art museum. Everyone should be able to come inside and sit down without being surveyed by video cameras,” says Inge-Dorthe Brønden Kaasgard, the vicar. “We have always been very proud of the painting.”

Nolde was married to the daughter of the church's pastor, in 1904, and the church commissioned him to paint the altarpiece. He was paid 340.57 krone for the painting. The work has been in the church and is now valued at $1.8m at auction.

A major Emil Nolde retrospective opened at the Städel Museum, Frankfurt, opened on 5 March. Nolde’s oeuvre has been represented in numerous special thematic exhibitions, the last retrospective to pay tribute to his work in Germany took place twenty-five years ago. Some 140 works are on view. in 1937 his works were confiscated from public collections, and 47 of his works, including 33 paintings, were subsequently shown in the Degenerate Art exhibition in Munich. In 1941, he was moreover barred from the “Reichskammer der bildenden Künste” (Reich Chamber of Visual Arts) and prohibited from practising his profession. Between 1938 and 1945 he executed the Unpainted Pictures workgroup, consisting of oil paintings after his own watercolours. Following World War II he received numerous distinctions, for example an award for his graphic work at the XXVth Venice Biennale. Nolde died in 1956 at the age of eighty-eight.

Police swoop after 'high value' jewellery stolen from antiques shop in Abbotsbury

Police swoop after 'high value' jewellery stolen from antiques shop in Abbotsbury
Police swoop after 'high value' jewellery stolen from antiques shop in Abbotsbury
POLICE dramatically swooped on a car on a busy road as part of an operation to track down suspects after a jewellery raid.
Shocked motorists told how several police vehicles descended on a vehicle on the A35 between Dorchester and Bridport yesterday afternoon.
It came after what police described as ‘high value’ jewellery was stolen from a shop in Abbotsbury.
Police put out a major alert after the theft from Rodden Antiques about 3pm.
Just over an hour later, officers swooped on a car on the A35 close to the Walditch junction.
An eyewitness said: “At first there were four police vehicles, then another car pulled up and then a van.
“I thought there must be something going on as it was quite out of the ordinary.
“From what I could see they took one man out of the car and took him away.
“They had pulled over the car in the bus stop, just before you reach Bridport.”
A Dorset Police spokesman said: “We have got three people in custody helping us with inquiries in relation to the theft.
“I can confirm that the shop involved in the theft was Rodden Antiques.”
It is understood the shop has recently opened up.
A spokesman for Rodden Antiques said they discovered three arrests had been made by reading the Echo’s website.
He said a nine carat Edwardian watch and an Edwardian ring were taken in the theft but he was unable to comment any further.
Residents in Abbotsbury said they were shocked to hear of the theft.
Colin Boxshall, landlord of the Ilchester Arms on Market Street, said: “Abbotsbury is generally a very low crime area so everyone here in the village has been very surprised to hear news of the theft. We never get any problems in Abbotsbury whatsoever so this is just truly shocking; I don’t think anyone was expecting something like this to happen.
“If anyone has any more information please do inform the police.”
Abbotsbury resident Lynne Simonds said said: “I’m very, very sad to hear of this, it’s so sad for a shop that’s just started up. It’s really awful.
“I think everyone will be on high alert after something like this and I’m very sorry for everyone involved.”
Arthur Cartlidge, of Abbotsbury Antiques, said he was shocked to hear of the theft.
He said: “They have only just opened up and it’s awful that this has happened.”

Police return stolen antiques to National Trust Houses

A detective from Surrey Police had the enjoyable task of returning a selection of antiques to National Trust Properties this week which had been stolen by a prolific thief from London.
The items, a Derby Porcelain Plaque and two Japanese Plates were recovered from a pawn broker in Hatton Gardens, London having been stolen from Clandon Park, Guildford and Petworth House in West Sussex.
Paul Whiting, 68 years, originally from Hammersmith, London appeared at Guildford Crown Court on 6 February 2014 where he was sentenced to twelve months imprisonment for the theft of the porcelain plaque from Clandon Park in May 2013 and the theft of two Japanese Plates from Petworth in February 2012. The sentence is to run concurrent to a sentence he is already serving for a theft at a National Trust property in Hertfordshire.
A key piece of evidence to convict Whiting came from CCTV images of the 68 year old when he took the porcelain plaque to Bonhams Auctioneers in New Bond Street for a valuation. John Sandon and Fergus Gambon of The Antiques Roadshow fame, were working that day at the Auctioneers and carried out an inspection of the item. A few days later, Mr Sandon read an article in The Antique Trade Gazette regarding the theft of the plaque from Clandon Park and recognised the piece as being the one he had recently examined. CCTV was produced from Bonhams of the meeting and circulated to other police forces. An officer from Hertfordshire saw the stills and recognised Whiting as someone he had arrested for a burglary at a National Trust House in West Wycombe Park in June 2013. Officers from Surrey Police interviewed Whiting in prison and subsequently charged him with the two burglaries.
DC Dave Pellatt from Surrey Police CID said: "Whiting is a prolific antiques thief who has caused a great deal of heartache and inconvenience to all those affected by his offending. I'm really pleased that we have been able to recover the stolen items and it's equally satisfying to know that he is now behind bars for a lengthy period.”
Caroline Sones, House Manager atClandonParksaid: "Last year staff and volunteers at Clandon were saddened when this beautifulDerbyporcelain plaque was stolen. We are delighted that officers from Surrey Police have recovered it for us and can't wait to have it on display again. The National Trust is one ofEurope's largest conservation charities and looks after historic collections forever for everyone. People come from near and far to enjoyClandonPark's collections of textiles, furniture and ceramics, representing the best in 18th century craftsmanship, in a grand English country house."
Andrew Loukes, House and Collections Manager at Petworth added: "The National Trust at Petworth are delighted to have the Japanese dishes back, and are very grateful to Surrey and West Sussex Police Forces for all their efforts. We are also pleased that our own CCTV coverage was able to link Whiting with the theft from Petworth.”
- See more at: http://www.surrey.police.uk/news/news-stories/full-news-story/article/9013/police-return-stolen-antiques-to-national-trust-houses#sthash.M0xuDPNu.dpuf

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