Le Figaro has knocked the arts and antiquities world for a loop by uncovering a "vast scandal" involving the sale of fake objects to museums and collectors. Last week two experts, Laurent Kraemer and Bill Pallot, were put under investigation. This week, it was Parisian collector Guillaume Dillée, arrested for his alleged role in passing off fakes as 18th-century furniture in a sale to the Château de Versailles reportedly worth 2.7 million euro. Valérie Sasportas reported the news (Scandale des antiquaires: un troisième grand expert mis en examen, June 18) for Le Figaro (my translation):
Contacted by telephone, Guillaume Dillée has not yet responded. But this news should resound like a new thunder bolt, because the man is a reference point. The representative of the third generation of a dynasty of historical furniture and art experts working at Drouot since the 1920s. On March 18, 2015, Sotheby's auctioned off the family's collection of furniture and art objects from the 18th century for 10.2 million euros. An amazing success for the expert, who had left three months earlier to relocate in Melbourne.The danger of having an expert in historical art involved in such counterfeiting is that some of the fake objects were of such high quality that they had even been classified as "national treasures."