South African Art Museum Heist Yields Paintings Worth $2 Million
A crew of art thieves made off with a set of expensive pieces from the Pretoria Art Museum on Sunday. The thieves nabbed six paintings from the museum, five of which were eventually taken off of the actual museum property. If the thieves can find a way to unload the works, they are worth around $2 million dollars.
On Sunday, the Pretoria Art Museum’s closed-circuit television was in need of repairs and had been completely shut down. In the system’s place, three security guards were left to watch over the museum’s collection. While many museums have pretty high levels of security, the robbery in South Africa may have highlighted that some robbery systems may not be totally up to snuff. According to The LA Times, the thieves arrived at the museum, paid the entrance fee (after stating the group featured a lecturer and two students), and then proceeded to hold up a security guard in the room featuring the valuable paintings.
The thieves eventually made off with six valuable works. However, one painting, a work called “Two Malay Musicians” by Irma Stern, didn’t fit into the getaway vehicle. The guys simply cut their losses and drove away, leaving the poor painting lying on the sidewalk outside the museum.
Hearing about thefts of paintings and other art at museums is always crazy, but this story is exacerbated by the fact the men walked in and all they had to do was hold one man at gunpoint to get away with the nice works of art. Interpol has been informed about the crazy robbery, and we’ll keep our fingers crossed the paintings will be recovered at some point.