BOSTON, Mass. (WGGB) – Over two decades after more than a dozen pieces of art were stolen from a Mass. Museum, new details are emerging on the investigation.
FBI investigators announced Monday that they have are confident that the 13 works of art taken from the Isabella Steward Gardner Museum on March 18, 1990, including ones done by Rembrandt and Vermeer, were taken outside of the Bay State.
“The FBI believes with a high degree of confidence in the years after the theft the art was transported to Connecticut and the Philadelphia region and some of the art was taken to Philadelphia where it was offered for sale by those responsible for the theft,” says Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston office.
DesLauriers adds that his agency has been able to identify the thieves “who are members of a criminal organization with a base in the mid-Atlantic states and New England.”
The whereabouts of the art is unknown at this point, after an attempted sale that took place about 10 years ago.
The FBI is hoping that renewed attention to the case, including billboard and a new website, will lead to the pieces coming back to the Boston museum.
There still remains a $5 million reward for “information that leads directly to the recovery of all of our items in good condition,” says Anthony Amore, the museum’s chief of security.
Amore notes, “We hope that through this media campaign people will see how earnest we are in our attempts to pay this reward and make our institution whole. We simply want to recover our paintings and move forward. Today marks 23 years since the robbery. It’s time for these paintings to come home,”
U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz adds prosecutors will consider immunity from prosecution for information that leads to the art’s return “based on the set of facts and circumstances brought to our attention.”
“Our primary goal is, and always has been, to have the paintings returned,” she says.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL FBI (800-225-5324) or online, the museum directly, or through a third party.