On August 4th, Raffaele Imperiale (one of Italy’s most notorious crime bosses), was arrested in Dubai. The Italian government had been searching for him since 2016 for alleged money laundering and international drug trafficking as part of organized crime activity.
Now we will roll back to 2002, when news emerged that thieves broke into the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam and stole two paintings – View of the Sea at Scheveningen and Congregation Leaving the Reformed Church in Nuenen. Well, when Italian authorities seized property owned by Imperiale in 2016, they discovered the two paintings behind a bathroom wall. That sounds like a scene from a movie.
I found it very interesting that just a few months ago, Imperiale was interviewed by the Neopolitan newspaper Il Mattino. During the interview, he denied involvement in the actual theft but stated that “I bought them directly from the thief, because the price was attractive. But most of all because I love art.’’
On the bright side, at least the museum got their paintings back.