Crimes Against Art: International Art and Cultural Heritage Law

Buy Nowby Bonnie Czegledi, J.D.

From the art world to the underworld, discover the high cost of stolen art

According to the FBI, art crime represents the third highest grossing criminal enterprise worldwide, behind only drugs and arms trafficking. Yet most countries apply few resources to its prevention or detection because it is often dismissed as a victimless crime.

Crimes Against Art: International Art and Cultural Heritage Law examines the cultural, historical, and economic impact of art crimes such as theft, forgery, fakes, war looting, and archaeological looting.

Author Bonnie Czegledi reviews major art and antiquities crimes from the past century, including heists from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and Boston’s Isabella Gardner Museum, looting during World War II and the Iraqi-wars, forgeries committed by Han van Meegeren and the Greenhalgh family, and the underwater salvaging of the RMS Titanic. These and many other cases offer new insight into the motives of thieves, the legal and ethical challenges of recovery and restitution, and the devastating historical and cultural impact of art crime. Czegledi evaluates current international treaties and conventions designed to protect cultural property and offers suggestions to address and prevent art crime − from exercising collective due diligence in buying, selling, loaning, collecting and donating art to reforming legislation and increasing criminal prosecutions.

Ultimately, Crimes Against Art is a call-to-action for a collective commitment to protect and preserve cultural property, our most precious non-renewable resource.

Expert insight into current issues in art and cultural heritage law

  • Covers 29 major art heists of the past century, including The Mona Lisa, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Isabella Gardner Museum, and Picasso’s Sketchbook
  • Provides due diligence checklists for purchasing art and best practices to follow if you are the victim of art theft
  • Reviews eight of the most important forgery cases − Han van Meegeren, Eric Hebborn, Elmyr de Hory, Tom Keating, David Stein, John Drewe, and John Myatt, Ely Sakhai, and The Greenhalgh Family
  • Examines the ongoing case of the RMS Titanic to illustrate the legal and practical issues involved in salvaging submerged cultural property
  • Provides a historical overview of Holocaust-era looting and presents the current legal and ethical issues involved in restitution

Table of contents

Foreword

  1. Introduction to Art and Cultural Property Law
    1. What is Cultural Property?
    2. The Problem of Theft and Pillage of Cultural Heritage and Attempts at Solutions
    3. Contemporary Art Heists
  2. International Treaties, Conventions and Domestic Laws
    1. The 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property
    2. Implementing UNESCO: The US Approach
    3. The Canadian Experience with the US Implementation Process
    4. Canada’s Implementation of UNESCO
    5. Reforming the CPEIA
    6. The 1954 Hague Convention on the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict
    7. First Protocol
    8. Second Protocol
  3. Criminal Liability
    1. Why Steal Art?
    2. Best Practice Guidelines: What to Do If You are Robbed
    3. Bata Shoe Museum Heist
    4. Criminal Sanctions in the United States
    5. Criminal Sanctions under the NSPA
    6. Criminal Sanctions in Canada
    7. Canada and Willful Blindness
    8. Summary of International Stolen Art Databases
    9. Iraqi Cultural Property: US Sanctions
  4. Due Diligence in Buying, Selling, Loaning, Collecting, and Donating Art
    1. Due Diligence Checklist for Purchasers of Art
    2. Commentary
    3. Purchasing on the Internet
    4. Due Diligence: Donations and Loans
    5. The Law of Gifts
    6. Loans and the Law of Bailment
    7. Art as an Investment
  5. The Art of War
    1. Holocaust Era Looted Art
    2. International Legal Commitments
    3. The Canadian Perspective: Recommendations for the Future
    4. The Restitution Movement
    5. Restitution and the Adversarial System
    6. Voluntary Restitutions
    7. The Sacking of Iraq
    8. War Provides the Opportunity for the Wholesale Destruction of Cultural Heritage
  6. The Looting of Archaeological Sites
    1. The Organized Crime Business Model
    2. The Anatomy of Looting: Nigeria
    3. Ethically Collecting Antiquities
    4. Protecting Underwater Cultural Heritage
    5. Legal Framework: An International Perspective
    6. Legal Framework: The American Perspective
    7. Legal Framework: The Canadian Perspective
  7. Fakes and Forgeries
    1. Types of Fakes and Forgeries
    2. Methods of Detecting Fakes and Forgeries
    3. The Expert Witness
    4. Scientific Testing
    5. Cases of International Intrigue
    6. Authenticity Matters

Appendices


Crimes Against Art by Bonnie Czegledi
Buy Now