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CRIME

Russian tourist drowns nine-month-old baby

A Russian tourist has admitted to drowning her nine-month-old son while on holiday in Liguria, north-west Italy, saying that she feared he had schizophrenia.

Russian tourist drowns nine-month-old baby
The woman admitted to driving around 20 kilometres along the coast to Bussana where she said she drowned the child. Photo: Davide Papalini/Wikicommons

The 40-year-old from Moscow, who was on holiday in the town of Bordighera with a friend, was arrested on Thursday for murdering her baby son, Corriere della Sera reported.

The alarm was raised by the woman’s friend who reported the child’s disappearance on Thursday morning.

CCTV footage from the hotel shows the woman leaving the hotel at around 2.00am in the early hours of Thursday morning. She was then seen returning to the hotel two hours later without the child.

The woman admitted to driving around 20 kilometres along the coast to Bussana, but first told investigators that she left the child on the rocks. She then admitted to throwing the baby into the sea.

Later on Thursday she reportedly changed her story, saying that she took the baby with her into the sea in a sling and drowned it. The woman said that she feared that her son suffered from schizophrenia like her mother.

The body of the child has not yet been recovered and police scuba divers are still searching for the child. French authorities have also been notified due to the strong currents.

The woman has been taken to a prison in the coastal city of Imperia. 

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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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