From Thailand with Love: Operation Antiquity

Federal agents outside the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, CA

Federal agents raid the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana on 1/24/08. Photo credit: LA TIMES

In yet another scrape with the Criminal Element, I talk about an operation smuggling a different sort of pot (not the green kind) from Thailand into the U.S.

A crowd gathered outside the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, California, on the morning of January 24, 2008. They weren’t museum junkies; they were federal agents raiding the place. By the end of the day, 500 FBI, IRS, and Customs agents had hit the Bowers and 12 other targets, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, San Diego’s Mingei International Museum, the Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena, the Silk Roads Design Gallery in Los Angeles, and Barry MacLean, a private collector in Chicago. In all, agents seized over 10,000 smuggled antiquities from Thailand, Cambodia, Burma, and China.

Read the full article here.

In case you haven’t discovered my articles for Criminal Element, check out the lot right here.


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