US authorities have returned a stolen coffin to Egypt, two years after it was acquired by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
The 2,100-year-old coffin of a priest referred to as Nedjemankh was featured in an exhibit housing artifacts from Egypt.
The stolen vintage was bought to the museum by a world artwork trafficking community, which used fraudulent paperwork, officers stated.
The gilded coffin was looted and smuggled out of Egypt in 2011.
“Thus far our investigation has determined that this coffin is just one of hundreds of antiquities stolen by the same multinational trafficking ring,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance stated, quoted by Reuters information company, at a repatriation ceremony in New York on Wednesday, including that there could possibly be extra related seizures.
The coffin, which dates again to the first Century BC, was purchased by the prestigious museum for $4m (£3.2m) from a Parisian artwork supplier.
It was first shipped to Germany the place it was restored earlier than being transported to France.
The museum was given a solid 1971 Egyptian export license, amongst different false paperwork, prosecutors informed US native media.
Officials stated the grand and ornate coffin had been buried within the nation’s Minya area for two,000 years earlier than it was stolen in 2011.
“This is not just for Egyptians however that is for our widespread human heritage,” Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Hassan Shoukry stated, quoted by Reuters.
It will subsequent be on show in Egypt in 2020.