A Van Gogh painting stolen three years ago was found in the Netherlands
The painting was painted in May 1884 and is one of the works of Van Gogh's early creative period. Its approximate cost can reach €3-6 million. It was stolen from the Singer Museum during the quarantine caused by the coronavirus pandemic on March 30, 2020 — the day when the 167th anniversary of the artist's birth was celebrated. Dutch police later released CCTV footage showing the thief breaking through a glass door and then running out with the painting tucked under his arm in the middle of the night. It is noteworthy that since 1962 the painting has been part of the collection of the Groningen Museum, and it was leased to the Singer Museum for a temporary exhibition.
A year later, the police arrested a suspect in the theft — it turned out to be a man named Nils M. He was found guilty and sentenced to eight years in prison. He also stole Frans Hals' painting "Two Laughing Boys with a Beer Mug". Brand said that he received information "from a source in the criminal world" that someone had bought a Van Gogh painting from Niels. In the Dutch media, this man was identified as Peter Roy K., who is currently behind bars in another case related to drug trafficking. Roy wanted to use the painting to exchange for a reduced sentence.
However, the painting was given to Brand by another man who wished to remain anonymous. According to the detective, two weeks ago he was contacted by a man who "had nothing to do with the theft." He wrapped the 39x72 cm canvas in bubble wrap, then in a pillowcase and put it in a blue IKEA bag. The art detective added that the return of Van Gogh's masterpiece is "one of the greatest moments in his life."