Illegally circulated antiquities seized in Bulgaria


Photo courtesy of Sarahtz Flickr

Sofia Globe has reported that Bulgaria has seized more than 2000 ancient and medieval artefacts, during major international operations supported by the European police agency Europol, were carried out to prevent the trafficking of European antiquities.

Europol announced on 28 January that 35 individuals had been arrested, and that law enforcement authorities in 14 European countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Spain, and the United Kingdom) carried out the operations. Search operations were carried out in 11 Bulgarian cities, where investigators seized 2289 cultural artefacts, all of which were meant to be protected by the Cultural Heritage Act.

Among the seized objects were: Thracian weapons, Thracian horse-riding decorations, antique pottery, bronze and precious metal, ceramics and glass, jewellery, bronze and pottery figurines of people and animals, ancient and medieval seals, antique surgical instruments, pieces of marble, Roman votive sticks, antique metal containers, and Christian crosses and icons.