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Fake or Fortune on BBC


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I watched the programme and felt so sorry for the woman bringing her kids up on her own .  The poor woman was out of her depth and bounced into a corner at the Auction sale by the Barrister who suddenly arrived and demanded the lions share of the sale of the painting .And tried to fob her off with 25% as a "finders fee " after she had the painting for 20 years .

I hope we are told who eventually "owns " the painting .

Funny the family now claiming ownership had never seen it ..   They have  no records of any thefts . No burglary ever being reported . It could have been given away  by a long dead family member  who will ever know ?  If you watched the programme who do you think should be declared the owner by a Judge . ?  My local UK tip / recycle center sells painting and furniture . Perhaps if I see a painting of a few sun flowers .... I had better make sure I get  receipt 

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The lady made a valid point in that had her father not picked up the painting-which was dumped outside a rubbish tip-then it would have disappeared completely. I think at the very least the proceeds should be split 50-50. As you say the family did not even know that the painting existed until Sotherby's contacted them. I think that leaving it until the last minute to challenge the sale was a cynical ploy on the family's part to-as you so rightly say-bounce her into a corner. As for the chaps patronising remark that he was sorry if she'd already spent the money(mentally) on a swimming pool-well!!

She had already said she wanted to invest

it to give her children a good start when they got older
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I thought a solicitor would be a little more careful with his words.Slander?

Sotherby's seem convinced they had originally spoke to a daughter who had referred the matter to her mother. Catalogue sent out with photo of painting included-not received. Very strange.

As you say a minimum of 50% split and consider themselves very lucky.
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Speaking to people on a telephone and " assuming " you have a person of authority on the other end seems a funny way of dealing with this by the auction house .

Today with Email and fax I ask myself why was this matter deemed to be so important not put into record ...Confirmation of the points raised in the conversation should have been put into writing ? Not very professional was it ?
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OTOH...and I totally agree with the posts above, and felt desperately sorry for the poor woman and her family...she WAS originally only expecting around the £30K the picture was valued at on the Antiques Roadshow, so even a 25% percentage of the sale price (if it had sold for the minimum auction estimate of $150K) would have netted her around what she'd originally expected. As she pointed out, she's now significantly out of pocket, and it's money she didn't have in the first place.

What I WAS puzzled about was that the guy who was interviewed by Fiona Bruce (the consultant who apparently set up the Art & Antiques squad at the Met) seemed to say fairly unequivocally that in such cases and with no supporting evidence to prove ownership, the law was, essentially "Finders keepers".

I might have had a little more sympathy for the "other" family had it not been for the crass remark about "swimming pools". After that, I hope they never see a penny from any sale.

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