Europol on 4th July reported that 250 police officers have searched simultaneously 40 houses in the Italian regions of Sicily, Calabria, Piedmont, Apulia as well as in Ehningen in Germany, London and Barcelona.  On the basis of European arrest warrants, 23 suspects were detained, and over 25,000 archaeological items were seized as part of this investigation, worth a total of €40 million.  In the district of Caltanisetta, in the centre of Sicily, which is rich in archaeological sites from the Greek and Roman epochs, local members of the organised crime group illegally excavated artefacts which were then brought out of Italy, equipped with false provenances and sold via German auction houses.  Key facilitators were also acting from Barcelona and London, co-ordinating the supply chain and providing technical support.

Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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