Friday, January 15, 2016

From Switzerland to Italy: "Symes material" returns

The media in Switzerland are reporting that material stored by London-based antiquities dealer Robin Symes have been returned to Italy ("Trésors d'un célèbre trafiquant cachés à Genève", Le Temps [Geneva] 15 January 2016). The items were seized in the freeport in 2001. The size of the haul is reflected in the statement that there were 45 containers.

The source is stated:
Comment ce trésor est-il arrivé à Genève? Interrogé, le parquet genevois ne fait aucun commentaire, se bornant à préciser que les pièces avaient été apportées du Royaume-Uni par un marchand d'art anglais très en vue à une certaine époque et ayant plusieurs fois défrayé la chronique. Son nom, qui nous a été confirmé par des professionnels du milieu: Robin Symes.
This does not appear to have been confirmed by the Italian authorities.

If this is confirmed as ex-Symes stock then it will place additional pressure on the British authorities to return material seized in warehouses in London.

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