The Courier & Advertiser (Fife Edition)

Off-duty police find looted statue in shop


Italian police said they have recovered a first century Roman statue stolen from an archaeolog­ical site in 2011 and found in a Belgian antiques shop by two off-duty Italian art squad police officers.

An Italian businessma­n has been referred to prosecutor­s for further investigat­ion.

The Togatus statue, featuring a headless Roman wearing a draped toga, has a value of £86,000.

It was stolen from the Villa Marini Dettina archaeolog­ical site on the outskirts of Rome.

Two members of the art squad’s archaeolog­ical unit were on assignment in Brussels when they took a walk in the Sablon neighbourh­ood that is known for its antiques shops.

They saw a marble statue they suspected was from Italy, and confirmed their suspicions when they cross-referenced the work with a database of known stolen antiquitie­s, a statement said.

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