Jan 6, 2009
This fantastic LS Lowry Street Scene was stolen from a collector in Notting Hill, London in 1976.
It was the victim himself who spotted the painting being offered for sale in the catalogue of a Mayfair gallery in November 2007. The gallery purchased the painting at Christie’s in June 2007 and looked to the auction house for reimbursement.
Christies went back to their consignor who originally told the auction house that they purchased it at a local auction. In fact, the consignor inherited the painting from her mother who was having an affair with a local married man and was given the work as a present.
Chris Marinello, acting on behalf of the theft victim recalls the strangest “acquired in good-faith” argument from the lawyer for the possessor. “If not purchased for cash, what was the lawyer arguing was given in exchange for the Lowry?” Marinello complemented the lawyer for the creative argument which ultimately failed to persuade the parties.
Marinello brokered a confidential settlement between the possessor, Christie’s, and the victim and the painting was returned.