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 11:50 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Experts believe that ISIS may be using a Spanish enclave to bring jihad to Europe.
updated 9:00 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
With an efficient subway, inexpensive taxis and a good public bus system, Hong Kong is normally an easy city to navigate ...
updated 7:32 PM EDT, Sun September 28, 2014
CNN's Ivan Watson was in the middle of a pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong when things got out of hand.
updated 4:12 PM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
The world's animal population has halved in 40 years as humans put unsustainable demands on Earth, a new report warns.
updated 8:49 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Every day, refugees and migrants risk their lives as they seek a new life. Now, a new report puts a figure to the number of victims.
updated 10:42 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 2014
Mainstream commentators must promote positive role models to Muslims feeling victimized, writes Ghaffar Hussain.
updated 2:13 AM EDT, Mon September 29, 2014
Two men familiar with inside knowledge of ISIS speak with CNN's Arwa Damon.
Explore CNN's interactive that explains ISIS' roots, what it controls, and where its support comes from.
updated 4:10 PM EDT, Thu September 25, 2014
In his first-ever interview as the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani defended his country against allegations of funding terrorism.
updated 11:03 AM EDT, Sat September 27, 2014
The North Korean leader hasn't been seen for weeks, leading to speculation that he is in poor health.
updated 9:54 PM EDT, Tue September 23, 2014
Haider al-Abadi hopes airstrikes don't lead to "of another terrorist element" instead of ISIS.
updated 9:19 AM EDT, Thu September 25, 2014
The United States couldn't do it on its first try. Neither could the Soviets.
updated 11:29 AM EDT, Wed September 24, 2014
CNN's Nima Elbagir reflects on a harrowing trip to Liberia where she covered the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history.
updated 10:23 AM EDT, Fri September 26, 2014
Contrary to public opinion, rats can actually save lives -- Apopo's rats have actually saved thousands.
updated 9:36 AM EDT, Tue September 30, 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