Stolen Italian paintings found near Ukraine

The paintings will be authenticated before they are sent back to Verona

Paintings stolen from Verona found on island near Ukraine

The Ukranian president has been shown paintings that were stolen from a museum in Verona, Italy, which were then found on an Island between Ukraine and Moldova.

The 17 works of art, including paintings by Tintoretto and Rubens, were found in plastic bags on a small island on the Dniester River.

They are estimated to be worth more than 16 million euros. Thirteen suspects were arrested in March after police checked more than 4000 hours of video and phone calls.

They included the Italian guard on duty when the robbery took place last November. His twin brother and the brother's Moldovan wife.

According to the Telegraph the Ukrainian authorities have invited Italian experts to authenticate the paintings before they are handed back to the Castelvecchio Museum in Verona.

It is understood that the paintings were found about one mile from the Moldovan border.

The thieves were able to get hold of the paintings as they entered the museum in the short gap between staff leaving and the remote alarm system being activated.

The Telegraph add that they forced an armed guard to give them his car keys and also tied up a cashier in the museum - the car was later used to escape the scene of the crime.

This isn't the first time historic works of art have been found in the Ukraine. Four Dutch painting from the 17th century were found in the country last month, over a decade after they went missing.

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