Monday, February 26, 2007

"An example of mob ties to art theft"

Derek Fincham points to criminal charges that have been brought against a group of Florida police officers for, among other things, delivering "a load of valuable stolen artwork from Florida to Atlantic City." Fincham says he finds the art-related charges "particularly interesting": "A number of claims are thrown about regarding organized crime and stolen art, but there is not a lot of hard evidence to support the claim. Here is some evidence, though it seems the far more serious violations were in regards to extortion and drug smuggling. One of the reasons given for a stronger criminal response to the illicit trade in cultural property are reports like this, which link stolen art to drugs and other more serious crimes."