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The League and its national associations have a long history of preventing book theft and of catching book thieves, both at national and international level. This also applies to stolen maps as well as documents, manuscripts and other related material. We work closely with booksellers, libraries, museums, the police, national governments and other institutions. Our intention is that thieves will have nowhere to dispose of their ill gotten goods.

This database is for books reported stolen after 15th June 2010.

TO ENTER OR REPORT A THEFT: If an ILAB bookseller, please login with your bookseller login and enter under "ADD A STOLEN BOOK" in the backend.
All other enquiries and help, please email: editor@ilab.org.

News

News

15 arrests in theft of Galileo and Newton original books

European judicial cooperation unit EUROJUST has released information about the arrest of suspects related to a large UK warehouse theft in January 2017. No information is yet available to ILAB about the missing books. 

The Hague, 26 June 2019: 

In a joint action day, the Romanian, UK and Italian authorities arrested 15 suspects involved in the theft of 260 priceless antique books with an estimated value of more than €2 million. The books, which included original editions of Galileo Galilei and Isaac Newton, were stolen by a highly sophisticated international organised crime group (OCG), known to the authorities for committing a large number of burglaries throughout Europe. Eurojust established a joint investigation team with the countries involved and Europol to decide and execute a joint strategy to ensure that all suspects are apprehended. With the active participation of Eurojust, an operational centre was set up at Europol to coordinate the national authorities’ simultaneous operations, which led to the arrest of 15 suspects, several hearings and 45 searches.

In January 2017, the OCG members broke into a warehouse in Feltham, UK, in which the books were stored, with their owners’ permission, to be shipped for display at a book fair in Los Angeles. The books, which belonged to individuals from various EU countries, included rare first editions of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The OCG members, who were of Romanian nationality, stole the books by avoiding all security systems and left the UK together with the stolen books.

Eurojust and Europol facilitated the close cooperation between the judicial and law enforcement authorities of Romania, the UK and Italy, which resulted in bringing down this notorious OCG. Eurojust, the EU’s Judicial Cooperation Unit, supported the execution of several European Arrest Warrants issued by the UK authorities towards Romania. Eurojust effectively coordinated the parallel national investigations into the case and provided substantial financial and logistical support to the joint investigation team, which was set up in 2017. During 3 coordination meetings, held at Eurojust in The Hague, and 4 operational meetings at Europol, all countries involved swiftly exchanged case-related information and evidence, solved judicial issues as they arose, and decided on the best place to prosecute.

The Romanian Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT), the Romanian National Police, the UK Metropolitan Police Service Specialist Crime South and the Italian Carabinieri Special Unit for the Protection of Cultural Heritage participated in today’s joint action.

For more information about Eurojust, see www.eurojust.europa.eu 
To contact the ILAB Office, please contact Angelika Elstner: secretariat@ilab.org 

 

Thefts of Collections

Thefts Of Collections

Larger theft of prints in Vienna, items mainly Vienna/Austria-related

26 March 2020:

A larger theft of prints was reported to the Austrian Antiquarian Booksellers Association and ILAB by Antiquariat Bauer in Vienna. 

The list of stolen items is attached. The items are mainly themed around Vienna / Austria. 
Please be vigilant and report back to ILAB or the bookseller if the items reappear in the trade. 

Contact details Antiquariat Bauer:
Mag. Michael Bauer
Gentzgasse 99
A - 1180 Wien
Austria
Email: antiquariat-bauer@chello.at    

[...] Read more
Thefts Of Collections

Large Theft from Passages in Portland, OR

6 January 2020: 
Passages Bookshop (in Portland, Oregon) was broken into on 2 January 2020. A first estimate is that 100-150 books were stolen from smashed display cases.

Most of the books are rare and signed editions of poetry, literature, photography, and modern art. I have only begun to identify the missing titles; a first shortlist follows, and we'll send an update with additional details when possible.

In case anyone suspects that they are offered material from this incident, the police contact is:
Officer Anthony Hill, Portland Bureau of Police
503-545-3436
Case number 20-1394

Or please contact the bookshop directly
David Abel
Cell: +1 503-233-4562
Shop: +1 503-388-7665

[...] Read more
Thefts Of Collections

Thefts at the Swedish Library at Vitterhetsakademiens, Stockholm

The Swedish Library at Vitterhetsakademiens in Stockholm has informed ILAB on the 26th September 2018, that during a recent inventory project of the library's rare Numismatic book collection, located at The Royal Coin Cabinet - National Museum of Economy, it was discovered that several books are missing, most probably stolen.

The case has been reported to the police.

ILAB-affiliated booksellers as well as book buyers are asked to be vigilant and inform ILAB or the directors of the library if any of the stolen objects re-appear in the book trade. 

See full list of stolen books enclosed (PDF).

Contact Details Library:
Annika Peurell
Head Librarian 

Enhetschef Vitterhetsakademiens bibliotek
Riksantikvarieämbetet/Swedish National Heritage Board

Box 5405
11484 Stockholm
Telefon: +46 (0)8 5191 8338
E-Mail: annika.peurell@raa.se

Contact Details ILAB:
Angelika Elstner
ILAB Secretariat 

secretariat@ilab.org 

[...] Read more
Thefts Of Collections

Update July 2018: Thefts - Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Many will be aware of a large theft from the Oliver Room at the Carnegie Library which was covered extensively by the press in the United States and the United Kingdom. The International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) urges booksellers and collectors to read the enclosed list of items stolen and immediately contact the offices of either ILAB or the Antiquarian Booksellers Association of America (ABAA) if you are able to help in any way to recover the stolen books. 

ILAB affiliated booksellers are expected to adhere to a strict Code of Usages and Customs to which deviations are not tolerated.

John Schulman of Caliban Books has resigned his membership and therefore is no longer a member of the ABAA or an ILAB affiliate. 

Contact details ILAB: secretariat@ilab.org

Contact details ABAA: sbenne@abaa.org

ILAB will communicate a further update in due course.

FILES FOR DOWNLOAD:

Carnegie Library Pittsburgh_Loss Report for ABAA and ILAB 

Carnegie Library Pittsburgh - Collection Markings vs2 (1)

[...] Read more

Listing of Latest Stolen Books

Published 10 July 2020

Les Roses peintes

Bel exemplaire en demi-maroquin rouge de l’époque, bien complet de toutes ses planches et des feuillets de texte. On a relié in fine les quatre pages de prospectus pour cette édition : « L’éclat, la vérité, l’élégance, le plus grand luxe typographique, ont procuré aux Roses de M. Redouté une vogue e uropéenne. On a reconnu, dans les portraits qu’il a donnés de toutes les variétés de la rose, la nature même… ».
Cette édition in-8, la première de ce format, fut publiée en 40 livraisons de 4 planches chacune. Nissen BBI, 1599.

Fort volume in-8 (246 x 162 mm). Faux-titre, titre et 160 planches hors-texte, toutes coloriées à la main. Demi-maroquin rouge à coins de l’époque, dos à nerfs orné (petits frottements d’usage aux coiffes et aux coins ; rares rousseurs).

[...] Read more

Published 08 July 2020

Memoirs of an Infantry Officer

A first edition, first printing published by Faber in 1930. A very good+ book without inscriptions. A stain to the page edge. Some browning to the edges. SIGNED to the rear of the half-title without dedication by the author. In a very good unclipped wrapper with a little loss to the tail of the spin e and to corners. Some light browning to the spine.

The limited signed edition is widespread, but this, the first trade edition is rare signed.

[...] Read more

Published 07 July 2020

Phèdre

Exemplaire sur Arches n°80

Published 07 July 2020

Les merveilleuses centuries et prophéties de Nostradamus

Exemplaire classique portant le n°487, illustré par Gradassi

Published 07 July 2020

Ruy Blas

Exemplaire sur vélin d'Arches n°79 avec une suite sur Japon nacré.