Smuggling bid foiled: 1124 Egyptian artefacts recovered before heading to Thailand

Nevine El-Aref , Thursday 5 Nov 2015

The archaeological unit at Damietta port succeeded in foiling the smuggling of a collection of 1124 stolen artefacts to Thailand

a bust of a roman lady

Egypt's archeological unit aborted the largest smuggling antiquities case from the country as a collection of 1124 artefacts was recovered at Damietta port before being smuggled to Thailand, Minister of Antiquities Mamdouh Eldamaty announced on Thursday.

He explained that the objects were hidden inside four wooden parcels filled with toilet paper. The parcels were to be shipped to Thailand through Damietta harbour.

Archaeologist Mohamed Etman, who inspected the objects, told Ahram Online that the committee he leads approved the authenticity of the objects that includes of a collection of ancient Egyptian and Graeco-Roman artefacts.

Among them, he said, was a collection of alabaster pots, wooden and stone statues, a collection of funerary masks, usabti figurines, offering tables, headrests and part of pillar. Until now, nobody knows from where these objects were stolen from but investigations will uncover the circumstances.

wooden usabti figurine

According to the antiquities law and its amendment, all the objects were confiscated by the police and sent to the Ministry of Antiquities. The whole case is now at the Prosecutor-General’s office for investigations.

head of a statuette

head of a statue of a lady from the roman empire

statue of a seated ancient Egyptian lady


Short link: