Great Britain

Rare books worth more than £2.5m stolen from UK discovered in Romanian countryside


DOZENS of rare books stolen in a warehouse heist have been found stashed under the floor of a countryside house.

Works from astronomer Galileo, Sir Isaac Newton and 18th century Spanish painter Francisco Goya were among 200 recovered by police in Romania.

The collection, worth more than £2.5million, was taken from a warehouse in Feltham, West London, in 2017, while waiting to be sent to Las Vegas for an auction.

The suspects involved were part of Romanian Mafia group the Clamparu, which was behind a string of warehouse burglaries across the UK.

Of 13 charged with conspiring to commit burglaries, 12 have pleaded guilty. The 13th will be tried next year. 

Detective Inspector Andy Durham, from the Met Police’s Specialist Crime South, said: “This recovery is a perfect end to this operation and is a demonstration of successful joint working between the Met and our European law enforcement partners in Romania and Italy - and at Europol and Eurojust.

“These books are extremely valuable, but more importantly they are irreplaceable and are of great importance to international cultural heritage.

“If it wasn’t for the hard work of Detective Constable David Ward and others in this Joint Investigation Team these books would have been sadly lost to the world forever.”

Romanian pickpocketing gang terrorise Brits in Majorca using child thieves to steal £11million from holidaymakers

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