Recent News

10 August 2020: Art thief’s audacious heist from “Haus of Flox” shop in Auckland

See the news article here

11 May 2020: Trustee Penelope Jackson (art crime expert) spoke to Jesse Mulligan on RNZ about recent brazen art crimes in Europe during the COVID-19 pandemic

Listen here

April 2020: Precious stolen manuscript by 14th Century Persian poet Hafez, now recovered, will be sold at auction in April

See the news article here

March 2020: Van Gogh painting stolen from Dutch museum during coronavirus lockdown (and on the day of Van Gogh’s birthday)!

See the news article here 

March 2020: Holy theft: the Auckland church hit by a Jesus statue burglary has been targeted again

See the news article here

3 March 2020: “Last Seen – America’s biggest art heist” on Afternoons with Jessie Mulligan, Radio NZ

Listen to the full interview here

Latest issue of the Journal of Art Crime – featuring New Zealanders!

The latest issue of the Journal of Art Crime (Spring 2019) features two New Zealanders:

  • a paper by Rod Thomas (Associate Professor at the Law School, Auckland University of Technology) about “Recovery of Art by Vindication of Property Rights”.  Thomas was a presenter at ArtCrime2019. 
  • a review of Penelope Jackson’s latest book Females in the Frame: Women, Art, and Crime.

We have more information about the Journal of Art Crime and how to subscribe on the ARCA tab of our website – here.

ARCA Blog – Interview with Lecturers ahead of the Postgraduate Programme May 28 – August 12, 2020 in Umbria, Italy. 

This year the ARCA (Association for Research into Crime Against Art) Postgraduate Programme will be held from May 29 – August 12 2020 in Amelia, Italy.  In the months leading up to it, ARCA’s Blog will feature interviews with the programme’s lecturers.  The first interview is with Noah Charney, founder of ARCA.  You can read the blog here on ARCA’s website (and you can sign up to receive updates whenever a new blog is posted).

November 2019: Theft of Jesus statue from Carmelite Monastery in Auckland – and then he returns!

See the news articles here and here 

October 2019: Read the Unity Books summary of the book launch for “Females in the Frame: Women, Art, and Crime”

Death of Dr Roger Blackley (1953-2019)

It is with sadness that the Trustees of the New Zealand Art Crime Research Trust acknowledge the death of Dr Roger Blackley (1953-2019) on 15 May 2019 at Wellington.

roger blackley

Image credit: Waatea News (

Roger will be remembered for his generous contribution to academia, his curatorial prowess, and as a gifted speaker and teacher.  Furthermore, the NZACRT would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge Roger’s professional knowledge about fraudulent art and speaking out about it.  In 2015 Roger delivered a significant paper at the inaugural annual symposium outlining the differences between authentic and fraudulent Lindauer portraits, “When a Lindauer is not by Lindauer: Trust Waikato’s Kewene Te Haho.  He detailed his findings about the fraudulent ‘Lindauer’ Portrait of Kewene Te Hao, now in the Trust Waikato Collection, Hamilton.   Roger interrogated the portrait with a vengeance demonstrating his passion for Lindauer’s work and the importance of showcasing the art of forgery.  Furthermore, Roger suggested that a ‘Lindauer’ portrait the Alexander Turnbull Library were considering acquiring in 2013 was not authentic.  Against his better judgement they acquired it and subsequently confirmed that it was a forgery.  Roger was interviewed by RNZ about both of these cases.  Listen to Roger (and others) here:$75,000-wake-up-call-over-fake-painting

Thank you Roger for speaking up about these works.

For those of us who knew Roger, we will remember him for all of the above and lots more including what a wonderful sense of fun he had, and spending time with him was always such a treat.  RIP Dr Roger Blackley.