Half-billion dollar art heist remains unsolved after 25 years

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Half-Billion Dollar Art Heist Remains Unsolved After 25 Years

After twenty-five years, one of the country's most notorious art heists has still not been solved.

Neither of the two robbers of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston have been captured, nor have any of the 13 stolen pieces been recovered.

The missing artwork, which includes Rembrandt's "Storm on the Sea of Galilee" and Vermeer's "The Concert," has been valued at an updated figure of $500 million-the most ever stolen in a single incident in the U.S.

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Half-billion dollar art heist remains unsolved after 25 years
In this Thursday, March 11, 2010 photo, the empty frame, center, from which thieves cut Rembrandt's "Storm on the Sea of Galilee" remains on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. The painting was one of more than a dozen works stolen from the museum in 1990 in what is considered the largest art theft in history. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)
FILE - In this Thursday, March 11, 2010 file photo, empty frames from which thieves took "Storm on the Sea of Galilee," left background, by Rembrandt and "The Concert," right foreground, by Vermeer, remain on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. The paintings are among 13 works stolen by burglars from the museum in the early hours of March 18, 1990. The FBI said Monday, March 18, 2013, it believes it knows the identities of the thieves who stole the art. Richard DesLauriers, the FBI's special agent in charge in Boston, says the thieves belong to a criminal organization based in New England the mid-Atlantic states. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds, File)
FILE - In this Thursday, March 11, 2010 file photo, a plaque marks the empty frame from which thieves cut Rembrandt's "The Storm on the Sea of Galilee," which remains on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. It is one of 13 works stolen by burglars from the museum in the early hours of March 18, 1990.The FBI said Monday, March 18, 2013, it believes it knows the identities of the thieves who stole the art. Richard DesLauriers, the FBI's special agent in charge in Boston, says the thieves belong to a criminal organization based in New England the mid-Atlantic states. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds, File)
FILE - In this Thursday, March 11, 2010, file photo, empty frames from which thieves took "Storm on the Sea of Galilee," left background, by Rembrandt and "The Concert," right foreground, by Vermeer, remain on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. The museum says it's doing the best it can with tours and lectures to help visitors appreciate the 13 paintings that were stolen. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds, File)
FILE - In this Thursday, March 11, 2010 file photo, empty frames from which thieves took "Storm on the Sea of Galilee," left background, by Rembrandt and "The Concert," right foreground, by Vermeer, remain on display at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. The paintings were among more than a dozen works stolen from the museum March 21, 1990, in what is considered the largest art theft in history. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Durham said Tuesday, March 27, 2012, in federal court in Hartford, Conn., that the FBI believes Connecticut inmate Robert Gentile “had some involvement in connection with stolen property” related to the art heist. Agents have had unproductive discussions about the theft with Gentile, a 75-year-old reputed mobster who is jailed in a drug case. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds, File)
In this Thursday, March 11, 2010 photo, Anthony Amore, current security director at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, stands beside empty frames from which thieves took "The storm on the Sea of Galilee," center rear, by Rembrandt and "The Concert," right front, by Vermeer. The paintings were among more than a dozen works stolen from the museum in 1990 in what is considered the largest art theft in history. It remains the most tantalizing art heist mystery in the world. In the early hours of March 18, 1990, two thieves walked into Boston's elegant Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum disguised as police officers and bound and gagged two guards using handcuffs and duct tape. For the next 81 minutes, they sauntered around the ornate galleries, removing masterworks including those by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Degas and Manet, cutting some of the largest pieces from their frames. Now, 20 years later, investigators are making a renewed push to recover the paintings. (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds) ** zu unserem Korr. **
FILE - This undated file photograph released by the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum shows the painting "The Storm on the Sea of Galilee," by Rembrandt, one of more than a dozen works of art stolen by burglars in the early hours of March 18, 1990. The FBI said Monday, March 18, 2013, it believes it knows the identities of the thieves who stole the art. Richard DesLauriers, the FBI's special agent in charge in Boston, says the thieves belong to a criminal organization based in New England the mid-Atlantic states. (AP Photo/Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, File) NO SALES
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On March 18, 1990 at 1:24 am, security guard Richard Abath broke policy by letting in two men dressed as policemen, shortly after which they tied him and his partner up in the basement.

It wasn't until morning when workers arrived at 7:30 am that authorities were notified of the break-in.

The museum had not insured any of the artwork.

Because such famous works cannot be resold, one expert believes the art was stolen to use as a trading tool with law enforcement in exchange for the release of criminal associates.

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