Norwegian convicted in theft of Munch paintings

Edvard Munch (1863 - 1944) is considered one of Europe's most important expressionist artists. He made several versions "Scream" (above) and "Madonna", which have undergone extensive restoration since their recovery.

OSLO — A Norwegian court has convicted a man of involvement in the 2004 theft of Edvard Munch masterpieces “The Scream” and “Madonna.” 

The Oslo Court of Appeals sentenced Bjørn Hoen (41) to two and a half years in prison. 

That was six years shorter than what had been called for by prosecutors during his hearing before the third appeals court, news agency NTB reported.

Prosecutors say Hoen did not participate in the heist but helped obtain the vehicle that the thieves used when stealing the paintings from an Oslo museum. He had previously been convicted in the case, but Norway’s Supreme Court ordered a retrial, saying testimony may have been tainted.

Hoen told judges Monday he was unsure whether he would appeal the new verdict.

Two other men, aged 36 and 32, have previously been sentenced for their role in the robbery; one of them drove the stolen vehicle, the other was convicted of stealing the paintings from the Munch Museum in Oslo.

Details of how police recovered the two masterpieces from anOslo warehouse in August 2006 have remained sealed.

Source: Aftenposten.no /  The Associated Press / Earthtimes.org

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