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Italy’s looted treasures found in lawyer’s home

Italian police have found a vast collection of the country's stolen historical gems in the home of a lawyer near Rome.

Italy's looted treasures found in lawyer's home
The stolen artefacts were found in the home of a lawyer near Rome. Photo: Italy 2

The collection, which included marble slabs, murals, bibles and statues, was amassed from at least 24 thefts over a number of years, Ansa reported.

The civil lawyer, who faces charges of possessing stolen goods, allegedly carried out the thefts from archaeological excavations and burial sites across Lazio, Umbria, Marche, Abruzzo and Tuscany.

The items, which also included crucifixes and paintings, dated from ancient Etruscan times to the Baroque period.

Police were able to ascertain that the items were stolen as newspaper clippings and photographs in connection with the thefts were also found at the lawyer's home in Grottarossa, on the outskirts of Rome.

Earlier this year, authorities in central Italy discovered a villa transformed into a private museum, housing hundreds of Roman artefacts allegedly stolen from the state.

Roman columns, statues, decorated marble and fragments of mosaic were found along with funeral plates and well-preserved terracotta vases.

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ROME

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome’s River Tiber

The body of a missing 21-year-old tourist was found in the River Tiber on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome's River Tiber

Elijah Oliphant, from Dallas, Texas, was on holiday with his family in Rome when he went missing several days ago.

Oliphant’s parents reported his disappearance after he left his hotel room shortly after midnight on May 24th and did not return.

Hotel security footage showed him leaving the premises wearing a white undershirt and pyjama bottoms, which he was wearing when he was found.

Oliphant’s corpse was reportedly spotted by passersby near the Ponte Sisto bridge in Rome’s Trastevere district around 10am on Thursday morning. His body was positively identified by his parents.

Members of the fire brigade and river police who recovered the body say there were no obvious signs of violence, but an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death. Trastevere police are reportedly investigating the matter.

The Oliphant family had arrived in Rome for a holiday on May 23rd. When Elijah went missing the following day, his parents launched an urgent appeal to help find their son.

His disappearance was featured on the missing persons television show, Chi l’ha visto (‘Who’s seen them?’) on May 25th.

Several foreigners have been found drowned in the Tiber in recent years, though there are no indication that any of the incidents are linked.

In 2016, the body of 19-year-old American student Beau Solomon was recovered from the river.

Rough sleeper Massimo Galioto was charged involuntary manslaughter in the case, but was ultimately acquitted in 2020.

Prosecutors said that Galioto pushed Solomon in the course of a violent argument. Galioto’s defense team acknowledged that the two had argued but said the student had accidentally slipped.

In May 2019, 37-year-old Imen Chatbouri, a former athletics champion from Tunisia, was found dead in the Tiber after a night out. CCTV footage later showed she had been pushed from the Ponte Sisto bridge.

A then-26-year-old man whose advances she had rejected earlier that evening was convicted of her murder in November 2021.

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