Monday 9 January 2017

Bulgarian, Turkish Man Sentenced in Shumen for Trafficking Roman Artifacts from Middle East

The Shumen antiquities bust case has had its culmination in a Bulgarian court (Ivan Dikov, 'Bulgarian, Turkish Man Sentenced in Shumen for Trafficking Roman Artifacts from Middle East' Archaeology in Bulgaria Jan 8th 2017):
A Bulgarian and a Turkish citizen have confessed their guilt in the smuggling of dozens of Ancient Roman artifacts [....] after their arrest in a police operation almost two years ago generated international interest. A total of 19 impressive artifacts originating in Asia Minor / the Middle East were confiscated from treasure hunters and antique traffickers in Shumen, Novi Pazar, and Ivanovo, Northeast Bulgaria, back in March 2015. Most of them were found in a garage owned by a local man, Petar Danchev, 60. A Turkish man, Veysel Sanli (52) was also arrested in the treasure hunting and antiques trafficking case. [...]  Even though the initial police reports spoke of more suspects, Denchev and Sanli have been the only two people to be charged over the bust which became known as “the garage Louvre" case in Bulgarian media. [...] Both are getting away with suspended sentences, with their testimonies providing no additional information regarding the origin of the trafficked artifacts or their destination. [...] Turkish citizen Veysel Sanli [...] has been identified as the owner of the smuggled Ancient Roman artifacts [...] , Sanli claimed that all seized artifacts were “heavy stones, modern-day replicas".
Previous PACHI texts on the seizure:

Sunday, 29 March 2015 Bulgarian Artefact Bust - Shumen
Sunday, 16 August 2015 'Bulgarian Antiquities Bust in news Again - Not ISIL Loot'.
Interestingly, a Veysel Sanli has a video channel, in which we see a lot of metal detectors in use.  Is this the same guy? If so, it shows once again the direct link (denied by supporters of collecting in the UK) between "metal detecting" and the broader issue of the commercial exploitation of archaeological artefacts. Here on one of his videos we see the digging up of a Greek silver coin with a metal detector and mattock (where?):

Digging, posted by Veysel Sanli

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