Knucklehead Art Thieves Attempt to Turn Gold into Lead

Bullet Shih Nov, 2012 0
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Henry Moore sundial recoveredThe Daily Mail has reported that police have finally nabbed the men responsible for the theft of Henry Moore’s Sundial sculpture this July.  The sculpture was stolen from the 72-acre grounds of The Henry Moore Foundation, the former home of the sculptor in Much Hadham, Hertfordshire, some time between the 10th and 11th of  July 2012. The sundial was a one of a kind working model for a larger sculpture located at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago and Moore had stipulated in his will that it could not be cast or replicated.  Police and Foundation members had feared that the work which was valued at up to $790,000 (£500,000) was stolen for scrap and melted down.  Unfortunately this was almost the case as the two perpetrators had indeed stolen the sculpture and sold it to a scrap dealer for $72 (£46) essentially hoping to tranform the sculpture into a lump of bronze worth less than one one-hundreth of a percent of its original value!  They might have succeeded if it were not for the discerning eye of the scrap dealer and his love for his mum.  The Daily Mail writes,

Prosecutor Ann Evans said: ‘These two items were stolen on separate occasions by these defendants and taken to a scrap dealer. He paid £46 for the sundial and £200 for the plinth.

These defendants had no idea what the sculpture was worth. When they were arrested by the police they said they had found the items in a ditch near Tesco.‘Clearly the sculpture is priceless. The director of the foundation values it between £250,000 and £500,000. Henry Moore in his will said no cast of the work could be created, so there was great joy when it was returned because it could never have been replaced.

‘The scrap dealer also had no idea what it was worth. He thought it was attractive and was going to give it to his mother as a present.

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