ROME Italian police have uncovered a complex network of thieves who stole valuable paintings at Rome's main airport, and charged two of the hub's staff with stealing the art works.
Cleaners and customer service staff duped people bringing works of art through the oversized baggage areas, national police said in a statement.
"Using the uniforms they normally wore to work in the airport, they easily convinced people that they were providing a genuine service and managed to swindle them," the police said.
By the time the victims realized what had happened, the paintings had been whisked away and hidden, ready to be sold on the black market.
Two paintings by contemporary artists Ugo Attardi and Renato Guttuso, valued at more than 50,000 euros ($55,000), stolen in a particularly lucrative haul a few days ago, had been recovered.
(Reporting by Isla Binnie)