Monday, October 22, 2007

Madrid Maps Update

The Times provides some new information about the Madrid map thefts today, reporting that Spanish police flew to Buenos Aires this weekend to recover the materials stolen from the Biblioteca Nacional and to request the extradition of the thief, César Gómez Rivero. Spanish authorities want to try Rivero in Spain, "where penalties for the theft of historical items are much stiffer" than Argentina.

This story also gives the names of the New York and Australian dealers who'd purchased maps stolen by Rivero: "Acting on requests from Spanish police, the FBI has retrieved another map from Richard Lan, a dealer in New York, who had sold it to a private client. Australian police have recovered another from Simon Dewez, a dealer in Sydney, who bought it in America. Both men insist that they bought the maps in good faith. 'I had absolutely no idea it was stolen,' Mr Dewez said. 'I thought it was a fantastic buy, a rare opportunity.'"

You know what they say about things seeming too good to be true.

This case seems to be wrapping up fairly tidily, provided that extradition proceedings go smoothly.

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