A painting by Picasso entitled "Compotier et tasse," or "Fruit bowl and cup," with an estimated worth of $11.5 million will be held by the U.S. government over an worldwide embezzlement case. The 1909 work's owner is currently on trial in Italy and the judge in the case set the terms on Monday.
The case is being taken seriously because the owner of the work allegedly stole from the city of Naples pretty hardcore. Italian authorities are charging the person with embezzlement and fraudulent bankruptcy offenses that lead to Naples losing $44 million. The Italian government believes the person orchestrated a number of schemes that avoided taxes, including fraudulent service contracts, fake accounting records, and false operational expenses.
The painting was originally seized by Homeland Security agents on May 21 when it was being sold for $11.5 million at a private sale. "We are very pleased that our investigation has led to the recovery of this painting that is so significant to the Italian people," ICE Director John Morton said.