According to New York prosecutors, more than 100 ancient artefacts seized by Indian-American art smuggler Subhash Kapoor have been returned to Pakistan by the United States.
Last week, Kapoor was found guilty in India of stealing historic religious items and smuggling them to his art gallery in Manhattan. He received a 13-year prison sentence.
Kapoor was the subject of a major US federal investigation known as Operation Hidden Idol. He was also wanted by American authorities.
He was charged in 2020, and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office has asked India to extradite him.
According to a statement from Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, New York returned 192 artefacts to Islamabad valued at approximately $3.4 million.
The investigation into Kapoor resulted in the confiscation of about 187 of the artefacts, Bragg continued.
A Gandhara statue of Maitreya, the awakened Buddha, and Mehrgarh figures from a Pakistani Neolithic archaeological site that range from 3500–2600 BC are among the antiquities that have been recovered.
At his exhibition Art of the Past on Madison Avenue, Kapoor offered smuggled items for sale.
According to Bragg’s office, since 2011, it has seized more than 2,500 artefacts that Kapoor and his colleagues allegedly smuggled for at least $143 million.
13 artworks connected with Kapoor were returned to India by Australia in March.