LONDON (Reuters) - British detectives are investigating whether a violin recovered during a police operation in Bulgaria is a $1.8 million Stradivarius stolen from a London train station more than two years ago.
The 300-year-old violin was snatched from Euston station in central London in November 2010, when its owner, Korean-born classical musician Min-Jin Kym, stopped at a restaurant to buy a sandwich.
Two bows stored inside the instrument’s case, a Peccatte worth 62,000 pounds and another made by the School of Bazin valued at more than 5,000 pounds, were also taken.
A man and two teenage boys admitted the theft in 2011. The man, John Maughan, then 30, was jailed for four and a half years.
The trio had tried selling the violin for just 100 pounds, local media reports said at the time.
The antique violin, made in 1696, was never found. A reward of 40,000 pounds was offered for its safe return.
Officers from the British Transport Police (BTP) were working with Bulgarian authorities following the discovery of the violin, a BTP spokesman said on Monday.
“BTP detectives are aware of the recovery of a violin in Bulgaria and will investigate, with insurers, underwriters and international colleagues, whether it is the 1696 Antonio Stradivarius antique violin stolen from a café at Euston rail station in November 2010,” the spokesman added.
Reporting by Clare Hutchison; Editing by Tim Castle