2 200 artefacts seized in European crackdown

2015-01-29 09:40
(AFP)

(AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Madrid - Over 2 200 looted artefacts, many from ancient Egypt, were seized as part of a Europe-wide crackdown that also snared 35 suspected traffickers, Europol announced on Wednesday.

Among the most valuable of the recovered cultural items was a majestic bust of Egyptian goddess Sekhmet worth an estimated €100 000, said Spanish police Captain Javier Morales, an expert in historic objects.

The Egyptian treasures were recovered as part of an operation launched in 14 countries to prevent the further looting, theft and illicit trafficking of cultural artefacts.

The 36 stolen items Spanish police showed to the press, which included a statue of the goddess Isis and a vase covered in hieroglyphics, were alone worth up to €300 000.

Agents discovered those artefacts hidden in cheap vases during an inspection of a shipping container from Alexandria, Egypt, at the Port of Valencia on Spain's Mediterranean coast.

Some of the objects were likely looted from the burial site Saqqara and ruins near Mit Rahina in Egypt, police said.

Discovery of the container led agents to arrest Spaniards and Egyptians, who now face a range of charges including trafficking historic objects, money laundering and belonging to a criminal group.

Among the 14 European countries taking part in the week-long crackdown in November were France, Britain and Germany.

As part of the operation, police inspected thousands of antique and art dealers, auction houses and second-hand outlets. Checks were stepped up at airports, borders and ports.

Last week the Italian government announced police had seized more than 5 000 ancient artefacts in a record €45m haul after dismantling a Swiss-Italian trafficking ring.

Read more on:    europol  |  spain  |  egypt  |  archaeology

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.