September 29, 2014 / 9:44 AM / 5 years ago

Philippine anti-graft court orders seizure of Marcos paintings

MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippine anti-corruption court on Monday ordered the family of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos surrender eight paintings by famous European artists, declaring they had been illegally acquired with public funds.

The Philippines has estimated that Marcos, his family and cronies amassed more than $10 billion in cash, jewelry, assets, stocks and works of art during a 20-year rule. About half this amount has been recovered.

In a three-page court order, the sheriff’s office was authorized to go after eight paintings by artists such as Michaelangelo, Pablo Picasso and Francisco de Goya.

Among the paintings were “Madonna and Child”, “Femme Couchee VI” and “Portrait of the Marqueza de Sta. Cruz”.

The court ordered searches of all known offices and residences of the former first lady and Congresswoman Imelda Marcos in Manila and Ilocos Norte in a bid to recover the works of art.

Imelda, 85, famous for her huge collection of designer shoes, has been charged with civil and criminal crimes, but has never been jailed despite evidence of massive wealth accumulated during her late husband’s 1965-1986 rule.

She has denied that her family’s wealth was ill-gotten.

Reporting by Manuel Mogato; Editing by Jeremy Laurence

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