Germans Foil Stolen Art Sell-Back Effort


German prosecutors told The Associated Press on Thursday they arrested a man who allegedly tried to sell back seven paintings stolen in the Netherlands. They include a Picasso and two Monets.

AP reports:

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Henri Matisse’s “Reading Girl in White and Yellow”

The seven paintings, which also included a Matisse and a Gauguin, were grabbed in the early hours of Oct. 16 in a lightning theft from the Kunsthal gallery in Rotterdam where they were on display. The paintings, worth tens of millions of dollars, have not been recovered.

According to CBC news:

The seven paintings, worth millions of dollars, have yet to be recovered. They include:

  • Pablo Picasso’s 1971 work Harlequin Head.
  • Claude Monet’s 1901 work Waterloo Bridge, London and Charing Cross Bridge, London.
  • Henri Matisse’s 1919 work Reading Girl in White and Yellow.
  • Paul Gauguin’s 1898 work Girl in Front of Open Window.
  • Meyer de Haan’s Self-Portrait, created around 1890.
  • Lucian Freud’s 2002 work Woman with Eyes Closed.

Three Romanian men suspected of carrying out the heist are in custody in Bucharest.

The fall heist from one of Rotterdam’s landmark buildings – designed by noted architect Rem Koolhaas – was low-tech, but effective. Security cameras showed two thieves forcing their way into the gallery through a rear emergency door before snatching the paintings. The pair were gone within two minutes, eluding police who had been alerted by an alarm.