Statue of St John the Baptist to Return to Naples 40 years After Being Stolen

It is a sad truth that the theft of works of art and cultural assets is a lucrative business in Italy, with the region of Campania, along with Tuscany and Piedmont, being particularly targeted.

San Giovanni Battista Statue.jpg

Fortunately, a special division of the Italian Police Force (the Carabinieri) are hot on the trail of stolen artworks and thanks to the work of the Military Command of the Carabinieri Protection of Cultural Heritage, a beautiful 16th century sculpture by Girolamo Santacroce of St John the Baptist in Carrara white marble was recovered – 40 years after its theft from the Church of San Giovanni di Carbonara in Naples in 1977.

Since its theft, it is thought that the statue passed through the hands of several collectors and was eventually found in Belgium by an antiques dealer, who recognized it and arranged for it to be returned to Italy.

The statue is currently in Rome; however, it will soon be returned home to Naples to the delight of the locals.

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