Reports earlier in the week that Picasso’s stepdaughter had accused the new head of the Luxemburg Freeport—who replaced Yves Bouvier while his conflict with Dmitri Rybolovlev remains unresolved—seemed to be endless bad news for the Freeport. But today’s accusations call the whole affair into question—or plunge it deeper into mystery:
Picasso’s stepdaughter believes that paintings stolen from the warehouse where she keeps her vast collection of the artist’s work may now be among works bought by Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev in a $2 billion (£1.2 billion) spending spree.
“Some of them may have been sold to Mr Rybolovlev,” Catherine Hutin-Blay’s lawyer, Anne-Sophie Nardon, told the Telegraph.
Ms Nardon said that when her client read press reports of the affair, she had spotted that some of the works bought by Mr Rybolovlev might be the same works that disappeared from her own collection kept in a special warehouse in the Paris area. […]
On Tuesday it emerged that French police had on Monday arrested a business partner of Mr Bouvier who issuspected of stealing Picasso works that he was meant to be transporting and storing for Ms Hutin-Blay.
Ms Hutin-Blay filed a legal complaint for theft against persons unknown, but Paris prosecutors said a preliminary investigation had been opened into Paris art dealer Olivier Thomas for theft, receiving stolen goods and fraud.
Mr Thomas, who police sources said was still in custody on Wednesday, was last month elected chairman of the board of the Luxembourg Free Port, a €60 million bomb-proof bonded warehouse opened last year where the super-rich can store their paintings, sculptures, diamonds and wine.
Picasso stepdaughter: Missing work could have been bought by Russian oligarch (Telegraph)