- Title: Belarus police seizes $2 mln painting stolen from Russian museum
- Date: 25th January 2017
- Summary: MINSK, BELARUS (JANUARY 25, 2017) (REUTERS) NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ART EXPERT PUTTING PAINTING ON TABLE FRAGMENT OF PAINTING EXPERT LOOKING THROUGH MICROSCOPE SIGN ON PAINTING READING (RUSSIAN) 'I. SHISHKIN' (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) BELARUS INTERIOR MINISTRY SPOKESPERSON, GEORGY YEVCHAR, SAYING: "The same evening when they were arrested the criminals were supposed to bring the painting to Moscow where a buyer had been waiting for it and was ready to pay 100,000 euros and three kilos of cocaine for it. So the painting was supposed to be a payment for another shipment of drugs."
- Embargoed: 8th February 2017 15:28
- Keywords: Russia Belarus painting Ivan Shishkin drugs
- Location: MINSK AND UNIDENTIFIED LOCATION, BELARUS
- City: MINSK AND UNIDENTIFIED LOCATION, BELARUS
- Country: Belarus
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice
- Reuters ID: LVA00160KWM6X
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: PLEASE NOTE: THE EDIT CONTAINS BLACK AND WHITE FOOTAGE
Belarussian drug enforcement officers announced on Wednesday (January 25) they have recovered a painting by Russian 19th century landscape painter Ivan Shishkin worth up to two million U.S. dollars.
According to Belarus ministry of interior, the painting was found during an operation to cut a drug trafficking route on the Russian-Belarussian border on January 16.
The painting was brought into Belarus along with a shipment of cocaine, ecstasy and cannabis, the police said. It was later identified as 1897 work by Ivan Shishkin 'Forest. Pine trees'. It was stolen from a museum in Russia's Vladimirsky region in 2013.
Belarussian police said the painting was brought into Belarus to be sold to a potential buyer from Europe, but the deal did not happen as the sides did not agree on the price.
The police also said the painting was supposed to be sold to an EU citizen upon arrival to Moscow.
"The same evening when they were arrested the criminals were supposed to bring the painting to Moscow where a buyer had been waiting for it and was ready to pay 100,000 euros and three kilos of cocaine for it. So the painting was supposed to be a payment for another shipment of drugs," the spokesman for the Belarussian Ministry of Interior Georgy Yevchar said.
The painting is currently being examined by experts in the Minsk National Art Museum. After initial examination the experts agreed that most likely the painting is authentic.
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