FBI Alerts Art Market Leaders to ISIL Antiquity Trafficking
August 28, 2015
The FBI says archaeological antiquities ISIL plundered from Syria and Iraq are being illegally trafficked into America’s art market.
Mollie Halpern: The FBI says archaeological antiquities ISIL plundered from Syria and Iraq are being illegally trafficked into America’s art market.
Bonnie Magness-Gardiner: We have credible reporting that suggests that people in the U.S. have been offered these items.
Halpern: That was Bonnie Magness-Gardiner, the manager of the FBI’s Art Theft Program. Since ISIL is using antiquities to finance its terrorist activities, the FBI is urging art collectors, dealers, and market leaders to be cautious before buying items from that part of the world.
Magness-Gardiner: We want not a single cent to go back to ISIL terrorists—not a single cent. Ask questions. Check history of ownership. Make sure they were imported legally into the United States. Verify the information. And deal with reputable dealers.
Halpern: The looted objects are invaluable.
Magness-Gardiner: They represent the heritage of the Syrian people; they represent world history and world heritage.
Halpern: For more information, visit www.fbi.gov. With FBI, This Week, I’m Mollie Halpern of the Bureau.