Category Archives: Art Theft

Anglo-Saxon brooch returned to local museum after more than a quarter century

Posted on: September 23, 2021 by Emily Gould

All too often in the field of art law we read about looting, destruction and loss, heritage subjected to risks and threats the world over. It sometimes feels like happy endings are rarer than hens’ teeth. Even less common, perhaps, are art world stories which have a very personal resonance. However, a story which came […]

Brexit and importing cultural goods

Posted on: December 9, 2020 by Alexander Herman

The Brexit Transition Period is set to end on 31st December at midnight Brussels time, 11.00 pm in the UK – everyone knows that. But what many people do not seem to know, even those in the cultural sector, is that by happenstance a particular provision of EU law will come into effect in the […]

A tale of two protests: Museum protest then and now

Posted on: November 9, 2020 by Alexander Herman

Emery Mwazulu Diyabanza (left) is a man on a mission. A prolific protestor at museums in France and the Netherlands, he targets objects on display that originate from Africa, lifts them from their stands and parades them around the galleries while making pronouncements on the crimes of European colonialism. ‘Je part avec à la maison,’ he […]

Latest issue of Art Antiquity & Law available now

Posted on: September 8, 2020 by Julia Rodrigues Casella Hommes

We are pleased to announce that the latest issue (Vol XXV, 2) of our journal Art Antiquity & Law is available now, please see below for details on subscriptions and access.  Paul Kearns provides the readers with a comprehensive panorama of the international legal regulations on freedom of artistic expression, a fundamental but much overlooked and […]

Art and Dishonesty: The New Test

Posted on: August 12, 2020 by Geoffrey Bennett

When the worlds of Art and Crime collide consideration of the issue of ‘dishonesty’ is not likely to be far behind. Not only is it a crucial ingredient in theft it also permeates other offences such as fraud under the Fraud Act 2006, or Conspiracy to Defraud at common law, and the specific offence of […]

Man jailed following attempted theft of Magna Carta

Posted on: July 28, 2020 by Paul Stevenson

Readers of this blog may recall the 2018 attempted theft by Mark Royden of Salisbury Cathedral’s copy of Magna Carta. Reports confirm that Royden attacked the document’s protective case before being pursued by members of the public, including American tourists, cathedral staff, and stonemasons, who detained him in a works yard outside. In a welcome […]

Art Crime in Current Times

Posted on: May 1, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

There is no doubt that the current times have caused extraordinary changes to daily life. There have been major impacts on every aspect of society, including how, when and where crime will occur. Thankfully, in general, crime has fallen since the introduction of lockdown measures in the UK. However, as noted in this article by […]

Response of the museum sector to the coronavirus pandemic

Posted on: April 10, 2020 by Emily Gould

In a blog post last week, we discussed the many ramifications of the Coronavirus pandemic on contracts. The effects are being felt by businesses and individuals in all sectors across the globe, and museums are certainly not immune to the challenges presented. The inevitable cancellations of exhibitions involves disrupting contractual arrangements on many levels, from […]

Recent case of ‘stolen’ Turing memorabilia highlights the complexities of the law of title

Posted on: February 13, 2020 by Charlotte Dunn

An intriguing series of events has led the US Government to commence court action over a collection of objects associated with Alan Turing, the British mathematician. Alan Turing is famous for his involvement in breaking the German Enigma code during WW2 and for his contribution to the field of computer science. This case raises questions […]

‘Bad things come in threes’ in the world of art crime…

Posted on: November 26, 2019 by Emily Gould

It has been a tumultuous fortnight in Europe in the world of art crime. First, we heard about the audacious attempt to steal two Rembrandts from London’s Dulwich Picture Gallery – thankfully unsuccessful with the perpetrators being apprehended and the paintings recovered within the grounds of the gallery. Then, yesterday, news broke of a heist […]