Feds pursue Manhattan art dealer suspected of smuggling

11 Jun 2013 1:24 PM | Anonymous

Feds pursue Manhattan art dealer suspected of smuggling


Agents seize art from a Madison Avenue gallery owner, saying evidence could unravel the biggest antiquities smuggling network identified since the 1990s.


By Jason Felch, Los Angeles Times

5:30 AM PDT, June 11, 2013

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Federal agents have seized an estimated $100 million in art over the last two years from a prominent Manhattan antiquities dealer they describe as one of the most prolific antiquities smugglers in the world.

Subhash Kapoor, a 64-year-old American citizen, awaits trial in India, where he is accused of being part of an antiquities smuggling ring that American and Indian investigators say spanned continents. U.S. authorities have issued their own arrest warrant for Kapoor, saying they have evidence he supplied stolen art to leading museums around the world.

In a series of raids on his Manhattan gallery and storage facilities last year, investigators with Immigration and Customs Enforcement seized dozens of artifacts along with Kapoor's business records. Among the objects seized were a 2nd century BC pillar sculpture valued at nearly $18 million and a 5-foot tall head of Buddha weighing approximately 1,600 pounds, investigators say.

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/culture/la-et-cm-asian-artifact-smuggling-20130611,0,7576610,print.story

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