Getty to return antiquities to Italy

Published: Sept. 25, 2007 at 9:32 PM

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- The Getty Museum in Los Angeles has agreed to return dozens of major works of ancient art allegedly plundered from Italy.

Under the deal with the Italian culture ministry, 40 priceless artifacts -- including fresco paintings from Pompeii, marble and bronze sculptures and Greek vases -- will be returned next week, the BBC reported Tuesday.

The Getty has also promised to return a 5th Century B.C. limestone and marble Athenian statue of the goddess Aphrodite in 2010.

The agreement marks a victory for the Italian government, which has been trying to recover stolen art works in court for the past decade.

The former curator of antiquities at the Getty, Dr. Marion True, is on trial in Italy on charges of conspiracy in the looting of artifacts that ended up in the museum's collections.

"The Getty Museum will not acquire anything that does not have an appropriate provenance, same as the British museums, and that is the biggest contribution to the future," said director Michael Brand.

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