Spanish authorities have confiscated a possible Picasso at Ibiza airport. During a search of a passenger’s luggage, officers found a work from 1966 entitled “Trois Personnages”. Now charges of smuggling are threatening.
Spain’s customs have confiscated a drawing attributed to Picasso worth 450,000 euros at Ibiza airport. Customs announced on Monday that the work entitled “Trois personnages” (English: “Three people”) was found in the suitcase of a traveler accused of smuggling on July 5.
The man came from Switzerland with the work, which was dated 1966, and tried to “import it into Spain without registering it,” it said.
According to their own statements, the Spanish customs officials had been warned by their Swiss colleagues about a work of art being transported under “suspicious” conditions. They then asked the traveler about the drawing. He stated that the drawing was a simple copy and showed an invoice for 1,500 Swiss francs (1,515 euros).
Drawing according to expert opinion, original work by Picasso
In his suitcase, however, customs officials found a second bill from a gallery in Zurich for 450,000 francs (454,000 euros) with a reference to the Picasso drawing “Trois Personnages”.
According to a preliminary expert opinion, it is an original work by the Spanish painter. The “price calculated by the gallery corresponds to the market price,” the experts found.
Customs added that this initial expertise must now be confirmed by a “more comprehensive report” using “the most modern techniques”. The traveler now faces charges of smuggling.
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