Seeking Information About Art Crime
March 4, 2015
The FBI is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the theft of an extensive art collection.
Mollie Halpern: The FBI is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the theft of an extensive art collection.
I’m Mollie Halpern of the Bureau, and this is Wanted by the FBI. Paintings—including one by Marc Chagall—were stolen off the walls of a home of an elderly couple in Encino, California in 2008. The paintings are worth between $14 and 22 million.
An FBI undercover operation last October led investigators to Raul Espinosa—who was trying to sell the artwork. Special Agent Elizabeth Rivas says Espinosa was a handy man in L.A.
Elizabeth Rivas: There may be other individuals whose houses he has worked on that may also be missing artwork.
Halpern: Nine pieces of artwork were recovered.
Rivas: Unfortunately, the actual owners of the art were not alive to see their art recovered.
Halpern: Another three paintings are still missing…
Rivas: Once we identify all of the individuals involved in the burglary, we’ll hopefully be able to recover the additional three paintings.
Halpern: If you have information on this case, call your local FBI office or your nearest American Embassy or Consulate. For photos, visit www.fbi.gov.
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