Special forces recover stolen Caravaggio painting in Berlinhttp://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,5742638,00.html
A stolen Caravaggio painting has been recovered in Berlin by German and Ukrainian special forces. Police stepped in just as the work was about to be sold, arresting members of the art trafficking ring as well.A valuable painting by Italian early Baroque painter Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610) was seized Friday in Berlin during a police raid, Germany's federal criminal police, the BKA, said Monday.
Members of the BKA as well as Germany's elite special operations police unit, GSG9, were involved in the raid, which interrupted a planned illegal sale of the work. The GSG9 is typically reserved for counter-terrorism or hostage situations.
One Russian and three Ukranian suspects from an international organized crime ring were also arrested. In Ukraine, where the painting was stolen in July 2008, 20 more alleged members of the art trafficking ring were reportedly taken into custody.
The rescued work - "Taking of Christ," also known as "Kiss of Judas" - was painted in 1602 and is estimated to be worth an eight-figure sum.
The theft from the Museum for Western European and Oriental Art in Odessa sent shock waves across the art world. The whereabouts of the painting, cut from its frame and removed from the museum by unidentified thieves in 2008, were unknown until police determined that the work was meant to change hands in Berlin last Friday.Caravaggio is known in particular for his chiaroscuro technique, contrasting dark and light in his works. He died young, at just 38, but enjoyed considerable success during his lifetime and is said to have had a major influence on great artists who came after him, including Rembrandt and Rubens.
Art Hostage Comments:
As soon as "Special Forces" were mentioned, BKA , GSG9 Germany, Art Hostage thought, fuck, better keep quiet.
Mind you, the BKA and GSG9 bosses did freak out a little when they saw this Art Hostage post last Wednesday, below, two days before the Caravaggio recovery.
See link: http://arthostage.blogspot.com/2010/06/stolen-art-watch-gardner-art-heist.html
Art Hostage had indicated Tuesday 22nd June something was brewing with this quote:
Something breathtaking is cooking in the Stolen art arena, will leave all open-mouthed, quote is "Brace yourself"
(Tuesday June 22nd 2010, 10.00am GMT)
See quote at bottom of post:
Like the Paris raid, when an Undercover BRB was made in the South Suburbs, Art Hostage had to let it be known, otherwise there could have been a killing of an Undercover BRB and that would not be conducive to say the least, upset the balance of the Stolen Art Underworld.
Whilst Art Hostage does have a habit of pissing off some within Senior Law Enforcement, Art Hostage is not reckless with front line Soldiers, who are just doing their job.
It is the "Stuffed Shirts" behind the scenes of Law Enforcement Art Hostage has problems with, in the same manner as Bob Wittman did with Warren T Bamford, stuffed shirt in chief, now forcibly retired.