French court gives a former electrician and his wife a two-year suspended sentence for stealing artworks worth over £40 million
By AP - Paris
A French court has convicted a retired electrician and his wife of concealing 271 stolen artworks by Picasso, and ordered the couple to give them back to the artist's family.
The verdict on Friday in the southern city of Grasse wraps up an unusual case centering around works that were unknown to the public for decades and have an estimated worth 60-100 million euros (£43-72 million).
Pierre Le Guennec and his wife, Danielle, say Picasso or his wife gave them paintings, drawings, lithographs and collages around 1970 when Le Guennec worked for the renowned Spanish artist. The family says Picasso never did.
Picasso family lawyer Jean-Jacques Neuer says the Le Guennecs were each given a two-year suspended sentence and accused shady art dealers of seeking to profit from the long-secret artworks.