Tuesday 9 July 2013

A Source of Ancient Dugups for Specialized Auction Houses

Fifty three people will face trial at the Criminal Court of Thessaloniki soon on charges of participating in the illicit trade of antiquities in Northern and Central Greece with connections abroad. Most of the defendants were people who illegally searched for archaeological artefacts. They delivered their finds to a network which "funneled the ancient coins to specialized auction houses abroad".
The illegal network was uncovered in March 2012 after a giant police operation was carried out in the regions of Macedonia, Thessaly and Central Greece. The investigations of the prosecution authorities revealed a priceless archaeological treasure consisting of a thousand coins and objects from various eras. The main defendant is a 67-year-old retired customs officer, from Yerakarou of Thessaloniki, who is temporally detained, and appears to have created a network of partners including many of his relatives. He managed to collect mainly ancient coins from different regions in Northern and Central Greece.
So who has been buying the stuff from this guy? How many collectors now have coins supplied by this looter-smuggler network in their collections, trustingly bought in a "nod's as good as a wink" transaction?

Maria Korologou,'Illicit Antiquities Dealers to Face Trial', Greek Reporter July 9, 2013

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