Art Thief May Sue Museum for Making Robbery Too Easy

Shame on you, museum.

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REUTERS

Radu Dogaru, suspected ringleader in the theft of seven paintings from a Dutch museum, hides his face while arriving handcuffed and escorted by police for his trial at a court building in Bucharest

Radu Dogaru, one of the thieves behind a brazen $24 million robbery of a Dutch art museum, has a message for prosecutors: He’s a victim, too.

Last October, Dogaru and six other Romanian citizens made headlines after they seized paintings by Picasso, Monet, and Gauguin from Rotterdam’s Kunsthal museum in only three minutes. The job was termed “the heist of the century” by authorities, who were amazed by the thieves’ speed and efficiency in snapping up the valuable canvases.

Now, Dogaru is saying the job was a little too easy, and according to the AFP, he’s suing the museum for not doing more to stop burglars like himself.

“I could not imagine that a museum would exhibit such valuable works with so little security,” complained Dogaru during a Tuesday court hearing.

His lawyer, Catalin Dancu, agreed. “We can clearly speak of negligence with serious consequences,” said Dancu. “If we do not receive answers about who is guilty, we are considering hiring Dutch lawyers to start a legal case in The Netherlands or in Romania.”

Dancu isn’t asking who is guilty of the robbery–that much is already clear. Dogaru has already confessed his role in the heist to Dutch police, and faces a maximum of 20 years in prison. Instead, his lawyer is concerned with who was responsible for the museum’s abysmal security system. You know, the real crime.

To be fair, none of the works at Dancu were equipped with an alarm, despite being worth a small fortune. Still, it’s a longshot, but Dogaru almost got away with one of the largest art hauls of the past hundred years–he’s probably accustomed to taking his chances.

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