Feeds

Death threats force art website to close

A dangerous business

Application security programs and practises

The website of Michel van Rijn, the self-styled inkslinger investigating and reporting on the global illicit art trade, has closed up shop.

Regular readers may remember our report about van Rijn's site back in 2004, when he was embroiled in a legal battle with James E Ferrell, founder of propane distributor FerrellGas, and Bruce Ferrini, an art dealer.

He resurfaced this summer in connection with the recovery of a long-lost Peruvian head-dress.

The artefact was described as the Peruvian Mona Lisa, and had gone missing in 1988 when a tomb was looted and the contents sold on the black market.

This time, however, van Rijn says he has been forced to close his site - not because of legal troubles, but because of a not-very-veiled threat to his children.

On his front page he writes:

"Today is the Day; the Day that your inkslinger has decided enough is enough. I'll keep it as brief as possible. For five years my website has been a beacon in the endless sea of the illicit trade in the artworld.

"It didn't bring me a billion dollars...neither did it bring me history, but neither, Baruch Hashem, did I pay the ultimate price. Today is also the Day that I received photos of one of my children at my doorstep."

Van Rijn, whose own life has been threatened in the past, says his children are his ultimate treasure, and he couldn't continue his website if it posed any danger to them. He is, however, determined to continue to work to repatriate looted artefacts. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.