Cairo, September 26, 2019 (CABNC): A stolen 2100-year-old coffin of a priest called Nedjemankh has been returned to Eygpt by the US authorities two years after it was acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The stolen antique was sold to the museum for $4m (£3.2m) from a Parisian art dealer. by a global art trafficking network, which used fraudulent documents, officials said. It was first shipped to Germany where it was restored before being transported to France. A forged 1971 Egyptian export licence, among other false documents, were given to the museum
The gilded coffin was looted and smuggled out of Egypt in 2011 in the wake of the uprising. It been buried in the country’s Minya region for 2,000 years before it was stolen.
“Thus far our investigation has determined that this coffin is just one of the hundreds of antiquities stolen by the same multinational trafficking ring,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said, quoted by Reuters news agency, at a repatriation ceremony in New York on Wednesday, adding that there could be more similar seizures.
In a reaction to the development by the Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sameh Hassan Shoukry said “This is not only for Egyptians but this is for our common human heritage,”
The Coffin is now expected to be on display in Egypt from 2020.