SPD Returns Mexican Artifacts

Today the Seattle Police Department returned seized artifacts to Mexico at a repatriation ceremony held at the Consulate of Mexico. In November 2017, SPD was contacted about an estate sale where Mexican artifacts were being sold. Upon examination of the items by anthropology experts and Mexican officials it was determined that the items were genuine Nayarit Figures (hollow clay figures), historical artifacts from Mexico.

After their seizure and because of the close cooperation between the SPD and the government of Mexico, the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico (INAH) determined that some of these pieces are in fact of pre-Hispanic origin from Mexican territory.

The Major Crimes Task Force worked over the last year with the Mexican Consulate, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Interpol, U.S. State Department, the FBI, local and national experts to make sure these items were returned.
“Seattle is a welcoming city and all of us at the Seattle Police Department are so glad that we can reunite these treasured artifacts with their home country of Mexico, where they rightfully belong…welcome home. I want to acknowledge our Major Crimes Task Force whose great work during this investigation led us to this day,” said Chief of Police, Carmen Best.

The restitution of the pieces was done in accordance of the Treaty of Cooperation between Mexico and the United States of America providing for the Recovery and Return of Stolen Archaeological, Historical, and Cultural Properties, as well as in the provisions of articles 5, 27, 28, 50, 51 and 53 of the Federal Law on Archaeological, Artistic and Historic Monuments and Areas.