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April 2, 2012

Spain reports recovery of two first-century Roman bronzes looted from archaeological site

The Roman bronzes recovered in Spain were about 5 feet tall.
(Photo via The Archaeology News Network)
Courtesy of Museum Security Network (MSN): An English-language news website in Spain, The Olive Pressreported that a pair of looted first century Roman bronze statues were 'rescued' in southern Spain before they could be illegally sold for half of their 6 million Euro value.

The bronze statues found in Jaen, a small town near Córdoba in Andalusia, reported The Olive Press "were taken from the ancient Roman site Sacilis Marcialis and are believed to form part of the Castor and Polix sculpture in Córdoba:
The statues, 1.50m and 1.30m in size, depict two naked males, with each piece weighing about 30 kilos and in a good state of conservation, although one has lost part of his chest and the other his genitals.
The Olive Press reports that according to the police commissionar Daniel Salgado, the figures were to be sold by two brothers at an finca (estate) in Pedro Abad in Cordoba "to an Italian buyer via an intermediary".  Interpol is now hunting for the buyer, according to the article.

One of the brothers has also been arrested and two other people charged with a crime against heritage and the attempted smuggling of historic property.  The statues will now be taken to the Cordoba Museum to be restored.