Police arrested a man today at Mar Girgis metro station in Old Cairo, on suspicion of stealing an artefact from the Coptic Museum, general-secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa Amin, announced.
Amin told Ahram Online that the alleged criminal was a security guard at the museum, and during his shift he chopped off a wooden decorative element from a door panel from the church of St Barbara.
The man hid the stolen piece inside a plastic bag under his clothes and left the museum after finishing his shift.
The police arrested him at the metro station, which is a short walk away from the museum.
Elham Salah, head of the museum department within the antiquities ministry, told Ahram Online the case was sent to the general-prosecutor and the stolen item was now in police possession during investigations.
According to Coptic tradition, St. Barbara lived in the Levant during the third century AD, and who tortured and killed after she became a Christian.
A part of St. Barbara's door