US to Return $10M Stolen Art Stash to Italy

'Treasure trove' of looted antiques uncovered in Chicago home
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 9, 2009 1:49 AM CDT
A Daunia Vase, part of a collection of millions of dollars worth of stolen manuscripts and other antiquities, found in a suburban home, is displayed at FBI headquarters in Chicago.   (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – A huge stash of stolen artifacts found in a Chicago home will be returned to Italy by US authorities, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. The artifacts—including letters written by kings and popes, and Etruscan works thousands of years old—were discovered by the homeowner's heirs after his death, and are believed to have been looted from private Italian collections.

"There was stuff all over the house in boxes. The most valuable from the Vatican was on the second floor in the attic," said the local police chief.  "It just goes to show you, you never know what you'll find in a bungalow." Investigators from the FBI and the Italian government believe the collection is worth up to $10 million.