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Thieves Steal Picasso, Mondrian From Greek Museum

First Posted: 01/09/12 07:42 PM ET Updated: 01/09/12 07:42 PM ET

Thieves broke into Greece's National gallery early Monday morning and stole three works of art, including a Picasso and a Mondrian.

Picasso's 1939 painting, "Woman's Head," donated by the artist in 1949 and Dutch painter Piet Mondrian's 1905 painting, "Mill," are the latest pieces that have fallen victim to the alarming trend of daring art thefts in the past few years.

A sketch by Italian painter Guglielmo Caccia, donated to the gallery in 1907, was also taken. "It all happened in seven minutes," a police official said.

The thieves accomplished the brazen theft by triggering the alarm system several times prior to actually breaking in, leading the guard on duty to believe that the system was malfunctioning.

The guard turned off the alarm, allowing the thieves to sneak in undetected at 4:30 A.M. Security later spotted one of the thieves with the aid of the museum's motion detector. Luckily the bandits dropped another 1905 Mondrian painting, "Landscape," before escaping.

At this time it is unclear how many people were involved in the heist. Police are looking for suspects and the art. Museum officials were unable to estimate the worth of the artwork as of press time.

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Filed by Andrew Reilly  |