French couple arrested for smuggling artifacts out of Cambodia

Thai authorities have arrested a French couple at a Cambodian border checkpoint for possessing what looks to be very old statues. The couple say that they were souvenirs bought at a market, and the artifacts are now at the Fine Arts Department for examination.

Couple arrested at Cambodian border with ancient relics
The Nation, 20 March 2012

A French couple was arrested at Aranyaprathet border checkpoint in Sa Kaeo province yesterday for possessing relics that appear to be ancient statues of two Hindu gods.

Officials have detained the two French nationals, aged 69 and 60 years old, for questioning because they did not have a permit to import historic items.

The couple was crossing the border from Poi Pet in Cambodia to Thai soil at the time of their arrest.

Full story here.

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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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