NPR

Israeli Authorities Arrest Antiquities Dealers In Connection With Hobby Lobby Scandal

Israel's Antiquities Authority says the dealers, arrested early Sunday morning, were involved in sales of antiquities to Hobby Lobby — including items that U.S. authorities determined were smuggled.
Hobby Lobby agreed earlier this month to a forfeiture of smuggled artifacts. Source: Holly Hildreth

At 3:30 a.m. on Sunday, Israeli police say, authorities arrested five Palestinian antiquities dealers in Jerusalem and confiscated items dating back thousands of years from their homes and shops: papyrus fragments from the Egyptian Book of the Dead, the bust of an Etruscan woman, a fresco from Pompeii depicting swimming fish. They also seized more modern objects — two black luxury Audi vehicles — and more than $200,000 in cash.

NPR has learned the reason for the early Sunday morning arrests: Israel's Antiquities Authority says the dealers were involved in sales of antiquities — including items

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