Sunday, June 05, 2011
Art Litigation: Second Circuit Finds No "Innocent Owner" Defense To National Stolen Property Act Seizure
In U.S. v. Davis and The Painting Known as "Le Marche" by Camille Pissarro, 2011 WL 2162897 (June 3, 2011), the Second Circuit rejected the "innocent owner" defense to a civil forfeiture action brought by Customs to enforce the National Stolen Property Act. The monotype was stolen from the Musee Faure in Aix-Les-Bains in France on November 1981. Once the government established probable cause that the painting was stolen, the burden of proof shifted to the possessor of the artwork to show that it was not stolen. The work was consigned for sale to Sotheby's, where it was seen by the French police, who notified customs.
US v Davis, The Painting Known as Le March by Camille Pissarro
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Labels: art law, art litigation, camille pissarro, civil forfeiture actions, national stolen property act, sothebys, stolen art
Partner in Manhattan law firm Dunnington Bartholow & Miller LLP in New York City litigating in federal and state courts and arbitrations. Experienced trial and appellate practitioner. Author: Copyright Litigation Handbook (Thomson Reuters 2015-2016). The New York Law Journal called it "an indispensable guide". Serve on the Board of Directors of the Federal Bar Association, served as Chair of the Circuit Vice Presidents, Vice President for the Second Circuit and General Counsel. Member Board of Governors, National Arts Club. President, Network of Bar Leaders (2013-2014). Attorney advertising disclaimer - prior results do not guarantee success. The statements and opinions voiced here are my own and not of my law firm.