500 fake works by Francis Bacon seized in Italy

The Italian police seized these counterfeit paintings by the British painter, preventing their circulation on the art market. He is one of the most popular artists in the art market. His triptych Three Studies by Lucian Freud painted in 1968 sold for $ 142.4 million at Christie's in New York in 2013, ranking it among the ten most expensive paintings ever to be auctioned. Also, the work of the British painter Francis Bacon , who died in 1992, attracts counterfeiters and unscrupulous collectors. The transalpine law enforcement agencies thus seized five hundred counterfeits of the famous artist, in Bologna, in the north-east of Italy , as well as cash and goods whose value is estimated at nearly 3 million euros, announced Friday, September 10, the Italian authorities. Five people have been charged with criminal conspiracy aimed at "authenticating and putting into circulation fake works of art" and "fraud and money laundering", their press release said. The main suspect, a collector from Bologna, was already the subject of two investigations launched in 2018, by the police and the tax authorities, add the Italian media. The Carabinieri were in fact investigating the collector, owner of "numerous works of contemporary art, including two drawings signed by Francis Bacon" and the tax authorities, on "financial flows of money with foreign countries, incompatible with his legal sources of income". "Resell to unsuspecting buyers" “From a careful reconstruction of the cash incoming from fraudulent sales, we saw how the organization […] used a UK- domiciled company to collect the proceeds which, once laundered, were redistributed among the suspects, directly or through national and foreign companies domiciled in Spain and Poland, ”said the official statement. The plan of the criminal group was ambitious: "to present the drawings on the art market through prestigious national and international exhibitions, catalogs, websites, foundations", specifies the information site swiss.info, to increase their price and "resell them to unsuspecting buyers". seen in Le Point , by Alice Pairo-Vasseur

500 fake works by Francis Bacon seized in Italy

The Italian police seized these counterfeit paintings by the British painter, preventing their circulation on the art market. He is one...