A reward to recover two archaeological objects stolen from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Persia, Persepolis, Achaemenid dynasty (558-330 B.C.), Head of a Guard (Fragment of a low relief) 5th c. B.C. Sandstone, 21 x 20.5 x 3 cm.
MONTREAL.- AXA ART – the world’s only art-led insurance company – is offering a substantial reward for the safe recovery of two small-scale archaeological fragments: an Assyrian low relief and a marble head dating from the Roman Empire that were stolen from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) in the fall of 2011. To avoid compromising the police investigation, details of the theft had not previously been released.
Although the Museum is naturally concerned about the monetary value of the stolen objects, it is particularly sorry to have lost these two quality objects from the collection and regrets that the Museum’s visitors will no longer see them on display in the galleries. The MMFA specified that this is an isolated incident. All of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts’ works are protected by a security system, and many of them are equipped with motion detectors linked to a sophisticated monitoring centre. As the Museum has comprehensive video surveillance of all its pavilions linked to its security centre and security guards on the premises at all times, the police and the specialized fine art loss adjuster Mark Dalrymple of Tyler & Co. appointed by AXA ART have had access to recorded video surveillance footage of the incident that clearly shows the perpetrator carrying out the theft. The stills attached to this release show a white male in his 30s, 5' 7" tall, carrying a satchel. An additional reward of up to CAN$10,000 is offered to anyone able to identify the individual caught on CCTV. AXA ART hopes these generous rewards will advance the investigation to recover these artifacts and apprehend the perpetrator. In order not to prejudice the inquiry, the value of the works removed and details of the investigation cannot be revealed.
Clare Dewey, AXA ART’s Claims Manager in charge of the case, has an MA in Antiquities. She explains, “The objects are easily portable and may have been sent outside Quebec. The priority is for everyone – AXA ART, the police and the Museum team – to work in close collaboration in order to recover them.”
To report any information that could further the investigation, please contact:
(1) Centrale d'information criminelle - 1-800-659-4264
(2) The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts 1-855-471-1800
(3) Mark Dalrymple at Tyler & Co. - +44 20 7377 0282 or
Roman Empire, Head of a man, Egypto-archaizing style. 1st c. A.D. Yellow Numidian marble. 20.2 x 13.3 x 8.5 cm.