Art Heist at French Museum

Sisley, Monet lost when gunmen storm French museum in brazen daylight heist
By Heather McPherson,  Newser User
Posted Aug 6, 2007 8:29 AM CDT
"Falaises pres de Dieppe," (Cliffs near Dieppe) painted by impressionist Monet in 1897, had been previously stolen in 1998, but recovered shortly after.   (Public Domain)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Hooded gunmen stormed a French museum in Nice yesterday afternoon and stole two Brueghel masterpieces, a Sisley, and a Monet. The thieves ordered employees to lie on the floor before stuffing the paintings in bags and fleeing. Police believe the heist was a "special order" for a private buyer because the works are too famous to be sold on the market.

Only six visitors were in the Beaux-Arts Jules Cheret museum when the thieves entered. The gunmen tried to take a fifth painting but were unable to do so, according to a staff member. The Sisley and Monet paintings had been stolen once before, in 1998, but were retrieved by police within days. The museum's curator was convicted of that theft.