Cultural Heritage Offences in Latin America: Textile Traffickers, Mummy Mailers, Silver Smugglers, and Virgin Vandals
Yates, D. (2019), ‘Cultural Heritage Offences in Latin America: Textile Traffickers, Mummy Mailers, Silver Smugglers, and Virgin Vandals’, in S. Hufnagel and D. Chappell (eds.), The Palgrave Handbook on Art Crime. London: Routledge, 483–501.
This chapter explores crimes related to the looting, trafficking, and illicit sale of cultural objects from Latin America. After a brief summary of the market for Latin American antiquities, the nature of crimes against those antiquities, and the policy that is meant to regulate the situation, four contemporary case cultural heritage crime case studies from the Andes are discussed: trafficking of ancient textiles, the trade in mummified human remains, the theft of colonial silver, and sacred art theft. The chapter concludes with a call for market reduction and context-specific, targeted responses to threats to Latin American cultural heritage.