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Gary Deane sent us this story, straight from the home of the 2003 ALA Annual conference.
Toronto police are searching for the owner of a collection of extremely rare books that a suave young man was trying to sell in the city.
A man was arrested for possession of property obtained by crime after police were called by a suspicious book dealer, Inspector Ken Kinsman of the downtown 51 Division said yesterday.
The major-crime unit became involved because the centuries-old volumes were researched on the Internet and found to be worth tens of thousands of dollars.
The most interesting part of the story may be that the books haven't been reported stolen, as far as the police can tell. There are no library markings on the books, so they most likely are from a private collection.
Gary Deane passed over A Short Blurb from Denver, where Police are looking for two people accused of borrowing $29,000 worth of DVD movies from metro area libraries and selling them at pawn shops.
Deputy Attorney General Ken Lane said in some cases they borrowed 15 to 20 DVDs at a time and kept coming back for more. Lane said there is a lesson libraries can learn from this.
"Library districts might want to take a look at their check out policies for DVD movies or other types of materials that are valuable," said Lane.
Charles Davis writes "To the monks of Mont Saint-Odile, perched high in the Vosges mountains, it seemed like the work of the devil. During nearly two
years of doubt and mystification, 1,100 ancient books disappeared from the monastery library without any trace of a break-in.
Yesterday, in a court in Saverne, Alsace, the mystery reached its conclusion when the thief, Stanislas Gosse, 33, was given a
suspended sentence of 18 months for a burglary that had echoes of Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose and a touch of Harry
Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
The judge was told of a lost map, a secret passage and a hidden entrance through a cupboard, all finally revealed by routine modern
technology - CCTV cameras.
Cliff Urr writes \"A short article - could be useful material for a Hollywood movie. From start of article: \"A French university professor who used a secret passage to steal more than 1,000 ancient books from a medieval monastery appeared in court yesterday charged with \'theft involving cunning\'\". NEWS.scotsman.com has the article.\" The professor was finally caught with the help of video surveillance. Paris is a city known for having several secret passages.
zanne writes "School principal, church pastor, and Tasmanian author Philip Weeks believes the Matrix resembles his story, The Protector, which was first published in segments in the 1990s and published as a novel in 2000. Read This and make up your mind.
The NYTimes On a global network of plundering that is rapidly depleting the immense reserves of ancient art and historical data that lie buried in cities that once made up the Babylonian and Sumerian empires.
The looting has been under way on a smaller scale for years, but it has exploded into an orgy of theft in the weeks since American forces toppled the government of Saddam Hussein.
The Guardian Reports Scotland Yard says it is estimated that 4,500 maps, which can be sold for anything up to £10,000, are missing from libraries across Europe.
The thieves are thought to steal to order for collectors across the world - the maps are especially sought after in the US and far east - or dealers who do not ask too many questions. The atlases they are taken from are ruined for ever.
Marv K. writes \"The head of the organization in charge of raising money for the Onondaga County Public Library was arraigned Saturday, accused of stealing a $50,000 painting from the library\'s main branch and selling it at his own garage sale for $200...
Detectives said that sometime in October, Dydyk removed the John Barrow painting \"Ben Porter\" from a vacant library office in the Galleries.
"A 44-year-old man has been charged with stealing copies of chapters of the new Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix novel."
"Donald Parfitt, of Worlingham, Suffolk, an employee of Clays printing firm in Bungay, has been released on bail to appear before magistrates in Lowestoft on May 14, a police spokesman said." (from Ananova)
A shameful theft of the crown jewels of memory was spotted by Lee Hadden.
The story says Until this week only soldiers and reporters had witnessed the devastation of the National Museum of Baghdad, the seventh biggest in the world, and the burning of the National Library, containing some 5,000 of the earliest known manuscripts. On Tuesday a team led by John Curtis from the British Museum returned from Iraq and agreed with the senior archaeologist, Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn, that we face the greatest heritage catastrophe since the Second World War. Though it is early days, two vast repositories of world history appear simply to have vanished.