Person Suspected of Trying To Steal Major Artwork Could Get Prison Time

Person Suspected of Stealing Major Artwork Could Get Prison Time

( – On December 2, a group of criminals attempted to steal a mural created by Banksy from the exterior wall of a building in Hostomel, Ukraine. The famous artist’s piece depicted a woman standing in a robe, wearing a gas mask and ready to use a fire extinguisher. In a January 2 statement, Ukraine’s interior ministry announced they had identified the leader of the group of thieves and issued him a suspicion notice. He could face up to 12 years behind bars for his actions.

Officials had already caught the individuals who had physically stripped the artwork from the building’s wall. They were moving it using wooden boards. Authorities also reclaimed the piece and found it had suffered no damage in the incident. But they are now honing in on the mastermind behind the plan to strip the already suffering nation of this valuable work of art.

Banksy is a street artist famous for his graffiti murals. He uses stencils to speed up his craft and often works under cover of the night. Originating in England, his identity remains unknown, but he enjoys fame worldwide.

The artist has pieces in various countries and uses his craft to promote political and cultural statements. He’s been producing murals and other works since the 1990s. Besides painting on walls, he also does canvas pieces and has branched into filmmaking.

The Ukrainian government estimates the piece’s value at approximately $243,900, and Banksy admits to painting the mural, along with six others in the war-torn nation, since early 2022 when the conflict with Russia started. He’s created other art in Ukraine using heavily damaged buildings as his canvases to depict various scenes, from gymnasts to children playing on a tank trap.

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