A century-old Japanese bronze Buddha statue, valued at $1.5 million (approximately INR 12.5 crores), was reportedly stolen from a museum in Los Angeles last week. The Los Angeles Police Department reported that the 250-pound metal sculpture was stolen on September 18 from the Barakat Gallery in Beverly Grove at around 3:45 am.
CCTV footage clearly captured the robbery. Suspicious video footage shows the alleged thief getting the statue by going to the driveway and using a truck to carry the statue to a car. The whole flight took about 25 minutes. The authorities were surprised to see that a single thief managed to do this despite its weight.
This unique monument is an ornate seated Buddha, about four meters tall, dating back to the Edo period in Japan (1603-1867). It is believed to have been specially designed to be the center of the temple.
If you look at the description of the image on this website, it says: “It is possible that there was a time when this sculpture was in the temple. Judging from the inscription, it is likely that this work was installed at the same time as the Yudo-no-San Temple. We wait for the weary pilgrims as they struggle to climb the mountain, reach the top of the mountain and see how this amazing sculpture renews their energy. In Vajra mudra, the right thumb of the left hand joins the five fingers of the right hand; this is also known as “six element mudra”, or “wisdom hand” mudra, because it represents the unity of the five elements of the world (earth, water, fire, air and metal) ) and spiritual consciousness. ‘
Frieze Barakat, the owner of the gallery, added that it is their most valuable asset, which they have behind the gallery for everyone to admire and enjoy. Mr. Barakat added that he believed that the theft was done first since the sculpture was on the gallery’s floor.
Paul Henderson, director of the gallery, also said that they do not think there is anything else like it in the market. The statue stands four feet tall, is made of hollow bronze, and is a sight to behold. He added that they were shocked and surprised to see something like this disappear. However, he added that it would be difficult for the thief to sell this piece of paper.
Meanwhile, police are investigating the case and scouring the area for more security camera footage.