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Roman Busts, 17th Century Paintings Stolen

December 13, 1988

ROME (AP) _ Three busts from the imperial period and nine paintings and a pendulum from the 17th century have been stolen from a government warehouse, officials say.

The objects were stolen Sunday night from the headquarters of the Lazio Province’s fine arts department. Officials said they were of inestimable worth.

The thieves apparently used a scaffolding erected for the building’s restoration to break into a second story window night and enter a storage area. The building is not equipped with an alarm system.

The head of the department, Gianfranco Ruggieri, said the robbery appeared to be the work of professionals acting on commission. He noted that the thieves left behind the only painting in the room that was not an original.

Another department official, Giovanini Castaldo, said the most valuable work was a wood and bronze pendulum by Giovanni Vivaldi, a relative of the famed Italian composer Antonio Vivaldi.

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