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CRIME

Missing woman found in ex’s parents’ wall

A body discovered by police in the wall of an apartment may have been there for more than a year. Police believe it to be the body of Samantha Fava, who was reported missing a year and a half ago.

Missing woman found in ex's parents' wall
Investigators had been searching a river for Samantha Fava's body. File photo: Giorgio Montersino

Police made the discovery in Fontechiari in the province of Frosinone, south of Rome, on Wednesday. Italian media reported the corpse is believed to be that of Samantha Fava, 37, who went missing 18 months ago.

Corriere della Sera reported that the body was found in an apartment belonging to the parents of Fava’s ex.

The investigation had gained momentum in recent months after the ex confessed to dumping her body in a river, the paper reported, after Fava fell ill and died in his company. 

The focus of the investigation changed after no traces of the woman’s body were found, Corriere della Sera said.

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CRIME

New York returns millions worth of stolen art to Italy

Prosecutors in New York on Tuesday returned dozens of antiquities stolen from Italy and valued at around $19 million, some of which were found in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

New York returns millions worth of stolen art to Italy

“These 58 pieces represent thousands of years of rich history, yet traffickers throughout Italy utilized looters to steal these items and to line their own pockets,” said Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, noting that it was the third such repatriation in nine months.

“For far too long, they have sat in museums, homes, and galleries that had no rightful claim to their ownership,” he said at a ceremony attended by Italian diplomats and law enforcement officials.

The stolen items had been sold to Michael Steinhardt, one of the world’s leading collectors of ancient art, the DA’s office said, adding that he had been slapped with a “first-of-its-kind lifetime ban on acquiring antiquities.”

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Among the recovered treasures, which in some cases were sold to “unwitting collectors and museums,” were a marble head of the Greek goddess Athena from 200 B.C.E. and a drinking cup dating back to 470 B.C.E, officials said.

The pieces were stolen at the behest of four men who “all led highly lucrative criminal enterprises – often in competition with one another – where they would use local looters to raid archaeological sites throughout Italy, many of which were insufficiently guarded,” the DA’s office said.

One of them, Pasquale Camera, was “a regional crime boss who organized thefts from museums and churches as early as the 1960s. He then began purchasing stolen artifacts from local looters and sold them to antiquities dealers,” it added.

It said that this year alone, the DA’s office has “returned nearly 300 antiquities valued at over $66 million to 12 countries.”

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