Antiquities theft and smuggle prevented in Israel

Crossing Authority Security Officers at Erez Crossing between Israel and Palestine prevented smuggling of rare artefacts while three men were arrested attempting to loot gold coins from the archaeological site of the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132-136 AD).

Artefacts discovered at the border crossing (by Crossings Authority Security Office)

At the Gaza border’s Erez Crossing, security forces prevented a Palestinian man attempting to enter Israel from smuggling in several antiquities from Egypt, including a signet ring from the Bronze Age, ancient coins from the Hasmonean period and an ancient statue. The suspect was detained and the items were seized.

Men detained while illegally digging at an archaeological site (by Israel Antiquities Authority Robbery Prevention Unit)

Meanwhile, at a 2000-years-old archaeological site at  Beit Shana dating to the Bar Kokhba Revolt three Arab men were arrested while attempting to loot gold coins. They were spotted by a routine patrol while digging with shovels an pickaxes, and using metal detectors. The men travelled illegally from the West Bank village of Beit Ur al-Tahta and were arrested for carrying out an illegal excavation despite not finding anything.

(after Israel Antiquities Authority Robbery Prevention Unit, Israel Crossings Authority Security Office, The Jerusalem Post & Arutz Sheva)

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