Italian authorities unveil a stolen artwork painted by the British artist Banksy as a tribute to the victims of the 2015 terror attacks at the Bataclan music hall in Paris,  during a press conference in L' Aquila. Picture: Andrea Rosa/AP
Italian authorities unveil a stolen artwork painted by the British artist Banksy as a tribute to the victims of the 2015 terror attacks at the Bataclan music hall in Paris, during a press conference in L' Aquila. Picture: Andrea Rosa/AP

How did Banksy artwork stolen from Paris terror attack site turn up at farmhouse in Italy?

By dpa Time of article published Jun 11, 2020

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Rome - A piece of Banksy art stolen from the site of a terrorist attack in Paris last year ended up in a farmhouse in central Italy, but the path it took there remains unclear, authorities said Thursday.

"Investigations are continuing to clarify how the piece arrived in Italy and the role played by Italians involved [in the affair]," Italy's Carabinieri police said in a statement.

Banksy painted the image of a mournful female figure on an emergency door of the Bataclan concert hall, where 90 people were killed in a November 13, 2015, Islamist attack.

The door was stolen on January 26, 2019, but Michele Renzo, chief prosecutor of l'Aquila, announced its recovery on Wednesday. L'Aquila is the capital of the central Italian region of Abruzzo.

The Carabinieri said it was "well hidden in the attic" of a house owned by an Italian citizen who lives in Tortoreto, a town about 85 kilometres north-east of l'Aquila.

It was "stored in a remote place, but without the precautions that you would expect for a very valuable object," Renzo said on the sidelines of a Thursday press conference.

The recovered door was shown at the press conference, where, according to local newspaper Il Centro, authorities announced that they made no arrests.

Il Centro said a French citizen was under investigation for trading in stolen goods, and the farmhouse where the door was found was occupied by Chinese citizens who seemed to be unaware of its value.

Banksy is a pseudonym for a reclusive British artist who keeps his identity secret and whose works are extremely popular and fetch high prices at auctions.

dpa

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