Malacca Museum break-in: Security firm sacked

… and rightly so! The break-in, reported two weekends ago, saw the loss of three replica Portuguese pistols and eleven even more valuable kris (Malay daggers) from the History and Enthonography Museum in Malacca.


photo credit: SqueakyMarmot

Museum fires firm in charge of security after artefact theft
New Straits Times, 20 March 2008

On Sunday police concluded the theft was an inside job because “the glass cases in which the items were displayed were undisturbed and there were no signs of a break-in at the museum near the Stadthuys”.

Asked to comment, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam said the contractor should also compensate the museum for the lost items.

Some of the kris date as far back to the 15th century Malacca Sultanate, during the time Islam started becoming the dominant religion in island Southeast Asia.

Related books:
The Malay Sultanates 1400-1700 (The Encyclopedia of Malaysia)
Old Malacca (Images of Asia)
Keris and Other Malay Weapons (Bibliotheca Orientalis: Malaya-Indonesia)

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Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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