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In April 1983, in the dead of night, thieves broke into the Museum of Islamic Art and stole approxi-mately 100 rare antique watches and clocks, including the Marie Antoinette clock valued at millions of dollars, and other valuable objects.
The burglary, named “The Great Robbery”, was well-planned and no clues were left behind. It was then the largest robbery in the history of Israel, and many agents were recruited to help the police in their search, including the Mossad, Interpol and private investigators hired by the museum’s insurance company.
At this stage, the Israel Police entered the picture and located a safe in Holland where they found 7 clocks, a jewelry box and a fake passport kit that was used by the thief. In the woman’s home in Los Angeles, more pieces were found and later other clocks and artworks were traced to various bank safes in France. There ended the saga that rocked the art world, and instantly entered the history pages alongside the theft of the Mona Lisa in the early 20th century, Munch’s The Scream that was stolen from the National Gallery of Oslo in the 1990s, and the mysterious disappearance of Rembrandt’s The Night Watch during the Second World War.