Art Loss Consulting Services
RECENT ART THEFTS
ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM THEFT
A $5 MILLION REWARD IS OFFERED FOR THE SAFE RECOVERY OF ALL STOLEN ITEMS IN GOOD CONDITION. THE RECOVERY OF AN INDIVIDUAL OBJECT WILL RESULT IN A PORTION OF THE REWARD, BASED UPON THE OBJECT’S MARKET VALUE
IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION CONCERNING THE THEFT OF THESE WORKS OF ART
PLEASE Call (212) 889-3000 OR EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org
LEGAL ISSUES OF LIMITATIONS OF TIME AND IMMUNITY FROM PROSECUTION
The Gardiner Art theft took place on the evening of March 18, 1990. The federal Statute of Limitations in effect at the time of the theft was five years (Title 18 USC, Sec. 3282) which expired on March 18, 1995. On September 13, 1994, the Federal laws were amended to make the Statute of Limitations on Theft of Major Artwork twenty years from the date of the offense (Title 18 USC, Sec 3294) – the offense occurred on March 18, 1990 and the twenty-year limitation expired on March 18, 2010. However, certain exceptions toll the Statute such as fugitives absenting themselves from the jurisdiction. Accessories After the Fact face a limitation of five years.
Massachusetts State Law
Chapter 277, Sec. 63 of the Massachusetts Criminal Statutes sets the limitation as ten years after the commission of an offense. That statute expired on March 18, 2000 with respect to the Gardiner robbery.
Anyone who conspired with the original perpetrators and has knowledge of the whereabouts of the missing Gardiner Art Works and has taken affirmative steps to conceal the missing Art Works falls outside of the Statute of Limitations as the conspiracy is continuing as long as the affirmative activity continues.
Immunity from Prosecution
In the Federal system immunity has to be conferred and is in the nature of use immunity. The candidate must first have a legal standing to seek immunity and one who is outside the Statute of Limitations and not involved by reason of a conspiracy status does not need immunity. Anyone else called before a grand jury can assert his/her privilege against incrimination before a federal grand jury and on the record assert the privilege, then the Federal Prosecutor seeks internal permission from the Department of Justice and obtains an Order from a District Judge to confer Use immunity on the witness. That witness is protected only as to the answers given that tend to incriminate him/her in a specific case. In the State of Massachusetts, immunity is known as Transaction immunity and requires careful questioning by the prosecutor or other official so as not to inadvertently grant the witness immunity from other crimes not the subject of the hearing.
In any event, immunity is always a subject of negotiations with the prosecuting authorities and experienced lawyers normally have achieved success if the client-witness has substantial information to part with.
UNITEL’S LAWYERS CAN PROVIDE LEGAL ASSISTANCE TO ANY QUALIFIED PERSON WITH
SUBSTANTIAL INFORMATION TO IMPART.
ALL CONTACTS WILL BE HELD STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL