Greek Professor Chasing Antiquity Thieves Around the World

tsirogiannisDr. Christos Tsirogiannis has been working as a Research Assistant in the Scottish Center for Crime and Justice Research at the University of Glasgow. His job entails the tracking and procurement of antiquities that are being illegally sold.

Just a few days ago, Tsirogiannis was able to track an ancient Sardinian marble statue of a woman who was dated to 2,000 BC, that was featured in a Christie’s auction. He immediately came in contact with U.S. and Italian police forces and managed to procure the 1.2 million dollar antiquity. The statue was featured in the files of Giacomo Medici, an Italian art dealer that has been sentenced for antiquity smuggling.

This, however, is not the first time that Tsirogiannis was able to save an ancient artifact. Between 2004 and 2008 he worked on 174 similar cases in Greece, while over the last decade he has managed to procure at least 1,000 antiquities.

When his contract with the Greek public sector ended and was not renewed, Christos Tsirogiannis decided to start his doctorate studies at Cambridge University. However, he voluntarily continued to work with Greek authorities in order to help them identify ancient artifact.

One of his associates in the antiquities smuggling unit in Athens had provided Tsirogiannis with the personal files of various smugglers such as Giacomo Medini, Symes and Michaelides. He uses the files to compare pictures of antiquities that have been stolen with auction databases and identify any object that might be sold illegally. He has been able to find 721 antiquities just through the Symes-Michaelides files.


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