Benghazi, 31 May:
The police in Benghazi have announced that they have arrested a Turkish gang whom they say have been involved . . .[restrict]in the theft of antiquities in the area and smuggling them out of the country. It is claimed they were working in cooperation with some Libyans and Egyptians.
During last year’s revolution a considerable number of artefacts were stolen, the most important of which was the entire Benghazi Treasure, a collection of some 7,700 items, mainly bronze, silver and gold coins as well as jewellery. It had been stored in National Commercial Bank in Omar Mukhtar Street, Benghazi.
Other reported items stolen during the revolution were a mosaic piece from Cyrene and a number of Roman amphorae, stolen from Apollonia Museum.
Other treasures from Cyrenaica were stolen earlier. In 2001 it was reported that at least 15 stone heads from Cyrene had been stolen early in 2000 and smuggled into Egypt soon afterward.