authorities The return of 16 antiquities to Egypt, announced Wednesday in New York, includes five works seized from the Metropolitan Museum of Art as part of an investigation into international art trafficking. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said the 16 films were worth more than $16 million. “Today’s repatriation shows that the antiquities trafficking network is widespread and pervasive,” Bragg said. said in a statement.

Nine of them belonged to Michael Steinhardt, who Bragg described as one of the world’s largest collectors of antiquities. In 2021, Steinhardt was forced by US authorities to return 180 of his stolen antiquities. The total amount is equivalent to his $70 million. Under that deal, he avoided going to prison, but was banned for life from buying antiques on the legal market.

Five works worth $3.1 million were seized from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in May and June as part of an investigation conducted by authorities in the United States and France. These five of his works were looted from Egyptian ruins, smuggled to France via Germany or Holland, and sold to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by the Paris-based Pierre He Bergé Society, Bragg said. I’m here. “In connection with this investigation, information prepared by the Manhattan Attorney’s Office and shared with law enforcement agencies around the world resulted in nine people being indicted or charged in France, including Jean-Luc Martinez, the former director of the Louvre Museum,” Bragg said. arrested,” he said. – AFP

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