Skip to main content

Stolen Stradivarius violin found after more than two years

By Melissa Gray, CNN
updated 7:45 AM EDT, Wed July 31, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The violin is intact with minor damage, police say
  • Police discover the violin and 2 bows at a house in central England
  • They were stolen in late 2010 near a London train station
  • Two teens were sentenced for the theft in 2011

(CNN) -- British Transport Police said Tuesday they found a stolen 300-year-old Stradivarius violin worth more than $1 million, along with two bows valued at more than $105,000.

Police released few details about how they found the items that were stolen in late 2010 near a London train station. They were found at a house in central England.

The violin was recovered intact with some very minor damage, they said.

"We're delighted to have recovered the violin after a long and very complex investigation," said Detective Chief Inspector Simon Taylor, who led the hunt.

He said members of other police forces, an insurance company, and antique dealers helped with the investigation.

Two teenagers were arrested and sentenced in 2011 in connection with the theft of the 1696 Stradivarius.

The violin's owner, acclaimed violinist Min Jin Kym, noticed her case containing the violin and bows was missing and called police.

She said she thought about the theft every day, even in her dreams, and was elated to learn it was found.

Stradivarius violins were made by the world's most celebrated violin maker, Antonio Stradivari, in the 1600s.

It is thought that from 1666, the Cremona, Italy-born Stradivari made 1,116 instruments, of which more than 600 are still in existence, including violas, cellos, mandolins and guitars.

During the 18th century, his unrivaled reputation extended throughout Europe where his instruments were coveted by royalty, aristocracy, church dignitaries and top musicians because of the extraordinary sound they were capable of producing.

Stradivari made his last violin in 1737 when he was 92.

Experts: Bob Dylan's long-lost guitar finally found

Tom Petty's stolen guitars recovered

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 6:49 AM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
British PM David Cameron has had the narrowest of political escapes.
updated 9:06 PM EDT, Thu September 18, 2014
British journalist John Cantlie hadn't been seen in nearly two years. Now, he's the latest hostage to be paraded out by ISIS.
The burial leader. The hospital gatekeeper. The disease detective. All telling powerful, stories from West Africa.
updated 7:03 PM EDT, Thu September 18, 2014
Alibaba's IPO is unlike anything investors have ever seen and could threaten other online retailers. Maggie Lake reports.
updated 11:58 PM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
Indian PM Narendra Modi has said al Qaeda will fail if it seeks to spread its terror network into his country.
updated 8:01 AM EDT, Thu September 18, 2014
Put yourself in the shoes (and sixth-century black robes) of ISIS' Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the mysterious boss of the terror group.
updated 3:39 PM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
 Tennis Player Li Na attends the WTA Pre-Wimbledon Party as guests enjoy Ciroc Vodka presented by Dubai Duty Free at Kensington Roof Gardens on June 19, 2014 in London,
Asia's first grand slam singles champion Li Na has called time on her 15-year tennis career.
Jenson Button has some of quickest reactions ever shown at an advanced sports lab.
updated 7:24 AM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
Creative companies with quirky ideas find new lending models advantageous.
updated 10:09 AM EDT, Thu September 18, 2014
Even death couldn't part two skeletons excavated from a lost chapel in an English county, found with their fingers entwined.
updated 6:07 AM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT