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Art thieves snatch paintings from Rotterdam's Kunsthal

Art thieves hit Rotterdam’s Kunsthal

Jacq(Photo: Flickr/Jetske19)

 

Seven extremely valuable paintings were stolen in a daring raid on Rotterdam’s Kunsthal in the early hours of Tuesday morning. Dutch police say the stolen works include a Picasso, a Matisse and two by Monet.

The thieves also made off with works by Gauguin, Meyer de Haan and Lucien Freud. It is one of the largest art thefts from a Dutch museum in recent years. A leading Dutch security expert has questioned the security measures at the museum.

There have been 14 break-ins at  Dutch museums since 1988; the total value of the stolen works exceeds 600 million euros. Some of the works have been recovered but many are still missing. 


A Kunsthal spokesperson confirmed that the works were part of the Triton Foundation’s private collection. The paintings had been loaned to the museum for it’s 20th anniversary celebrations. 


According to former Kunsthal director Wim van Krimpen, the paintings are worth more than a million euros. He believes the thieves will not be able to sell the artworks as they are all well-known and well-documented.

The works may have been stolen to order; it’s also possible that the robbers will return the paintings in exchange for a ransom.

It is not yet known how they managed to get into the museum; police are reviewing videotape evidence and have appealed to the public for any information on the heist. The museum was closed to the public on Tuesday.

 

-(IEDE)

 

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