Case of stolen art may help Marbles demand

LONDON (Reuters) – A British court case over art looted by the Nazis could pave the way for Britain to return Greece’s Parthenon Marbles, whose ownership the two countries have long disputed. Britain’s Attorney General, Lord Peter Goldsmith, has asked the High Court to establish whether the British Museum – home to the fifth-century BC sculptures that were taken from Athens in the early 19th century – has a moral duty to return property obtained improperly. The museum wants to return four Old Master drawings stolen by the Nazis from a Jewish collector in the 1930s but British law prevents it disposing of anything in its vast collection. If the court rules that Goldsmith – the government’s top legal adviser – can give his permission for the works to be returned, it could prompt demands for the museum to hand back other works.