Say it Isn't PicasSo - Paris Art Theft Raises Security and Title Concerns

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A major art heist this past week raises considerable issues regarding art security and title. At the Paris Museum of Modern Art, a brazen thief made off with five paintings, valued together in excess of $120 million. The masked intruder's plunder included significant works by Picasso, Matisse, Braque, Modigliani and Léger. Officials in Paris decried the theft as a devastating loss to the art world that demonstrated serious lapses in the museum's security system. For instance, the thief had only to break a window and smash a grill's padlock to gain access to the museum’s priceless collection. What is more, even though there were security officers on duty at the museum at the time of the theft, they witnessed nothing. The museum's security camera did yield an image of the thief, but it is not yet known whether any of the culprit’s features are discernable enough to provide investigators with any useful leads. Alarmingly, this is the second time in less than a year that a significant work of art has been stolen in France. The last theft, which involved a Degas pastel valued at nearly $1 million, was stolen from the Cantini Museum in Marseille.

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Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP on:

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