U.S. Justice Department Brings Forfeiture Action for 10th Century Statute Looted from Cambodia

IMPORTANT: The full content of this page is available to premium users only.

Thursday, July 22, 2021
Bruce Zagaris

On July 15, 2021, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced the filing of a civil complaint seeking forfeiture of a 10th Century Khmer sandstone statue – Skanda on a  Peacock – in order to return it to the Kingdom of Cambodia.[1] In approximately 1997, a former member of the Khmer Rouge led a team of looters who store the statute from the Prasat Krachap temple at Koh Ker in Cambodia. Thereafter, antiquities dealer Douglas Latchford allegedly sold it into the international art market.  The statue is considered to be a masterpiece of artistic achievement and a valuable part of the Cambodian cultural heritage.[2]

[1]    U.S. Department of Justice, 10th Century Statute Looted from Cambodian Temple Is Subject of Forfeiture Action Filed in Manhattan Federal Court, Press Rel. 21-181, July 15, 2021.

[2]    United States. V. 10th Century Cambodian Sandstone Sculpture Depicting Skanda on a Peacock, United States District Court Southern District of N.Y., Case 1:21-cv-06065, Verified Complaint for Forfeiture, July 15, 2021, paragr. 1 https%3A%2F%2Fwww.justice.gov%2Fusao-sdny%2Fpress-release%2Ffile%2F1412521%2Fdownload&...