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Roman statue stolen 3 decades ago will be returned to Italy

The marble Torlonia Peplophoros was taken from a villa then sold in 2001.
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After more than 30 years, the Torlonia Peplophoros is going home.

The marble Roman statue of a headless woman wearing a body-length garment called a peplos, or peplum, was stolen along with 14 other items from the Villa Torlonia in Rome on Nov. 11, 1983.

The statue was imported to the U.S. by the owner of a New York gallery owner in the late 1990s and sold in 2001 for about $75,000.

After the buyer tried to sell the Torlonia Peplophoros to a city auction house, it was discovered the statue had been stolen. The buyer voluntarily handed the statue over the FBI late last year.

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At a special ceremony at the New York Historical Society on Central Park West on Wednesday afternoon, Deputy U.S. Attorney Joon Kim is expected to formally return the Torlonia Peplophoros to Italy, a press release said.

It is unknown whether the statue will return to theVilla Torlonia.

The Villa Torlonia was purchased by Vatican banker Giovanni Torlonia in 1797 and remained in his family until 1977. Benito Mussolini used the Villa as his personal residence from 1925-1943.

Afterward, the home was maintained by the Municipality of Rome and contained various works of art and other cultural items that were available for public viewing.

 
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