Artefacts worth $3.2m stolen

2012-04-07 20:32

London - Two Chinese artefacts with an estimated combined value of £2m ($3.2m) have been stolen from Durham University's Oriental Museum, authorities said on Saturday.

Durham police said two men and a woman from the West Midlands area have been arrested in connection with the Thursday night theft, but the items have not yet been recovered.

The northern England-based university confirmed that two "priceless" artefacts were stolen when thieves broke into a ground-floor gallery at the museum: A large jade bowl with a Chinese poem written inside that dates back to 1769, and a Dehua porcelain sculpture.

"We are extremely upset to have fallen victim to such a serious crime," said Craig Barclay, the museum's curator, in a statement.

"The two pieces are highly significant in that they are fine examples of artefacts from the Qing Dynasty."

Police said in a statement that they are still trying to locate "several outstanding suspects". The museum will be closed until further notice, the university said.

  • Francois Van Lill - 2012-04-08 11:54

    Museum theft is on the increase we live in a world of economic crisis, it is time that museums and Universities upgrade their security and get protection. Just remember the Egyptian fiasco of last year. Interpol needs to get involve in dealings with stolen artifacts, i mean there is websites that is openly selling artifacts ?

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