Tomorrow’s edition of the London Times (or today’s, depending on where in the world you are at the moment), has an article on the Forbes Smiley case that adds some new information from the FBI. Despite Smiley’s plea of not guilty last August,
FBI sources said that Mr Smiley had admitted the theft of more than a hundred maps, and the bureau is trying to find their purchasers and previous owners.
Since June, an FBI art-crime squad in Philadelphia has sent warnings to the British Library and other institutions where Mr Smiley, a specialist in Americana, conducted his studies on what seems to have been a worldwide map-stealing escapade. “The FBI has been in contact with certain other rare book libraries and learnt that those institutions are finding rare maps missing from volumes that Smiley had viewed,” the FBI said.
The article also quotes two map dealers’ their suspicions of Smiley, which necessitates the question: if Graham Arader was “telling collectors for years that [Smiley] was a crook,” was nothing more than that done?