Disgraced Manhattan Art Dealer Subhash Kapoor Is Sentenced to a Decade in Indian Prison

Kapoor, long a target of the Manhattan DA's Office, has finally been sentenced for his role in antiquity trafficking.

Alvin Bragg speaking in court
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, whose office has investigated Kapoor for the past decade.
(Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

Subhash Kapoor was sentenced to 10 years in jail by a court in Kumbakonam, India for art trafficking. The Indian-American dealer was convicted on Nov. 1 for his involvement in the smuggling and illegal export of 19 antiquities, as reported by New India Express.

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Kapoor conspired to steal these antiquities from the Sri Varadaraja Perumal temple in the Ariyular district, before exporting them to his Manhattan gallery, according to the Idol Wing police unit in Tamil Nadu, who specialize in smuggled antiquity cases. Four other antiquity smuggling cases across India are still pending against Kapoor, who was extradited to the country in order to face charges after being detained by police in 2011 in Cologne, Germany.

The Antiquity Trafficking Unit at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office has been investigating Kapoor, 71, for his alleged illegal looting and sale of artifacts for more than a decade. Between 2011 and 2022, the unit and Homeland Security Investigations recovered more than 2,500 items trafficked by Kapoor and his network, with a total value exceeding $143 million.

Artwork linked to the antiquity dealer continues to be investigated and repatriated. In October, 235 pieces worth $4 million were returned to India by the Antiquity Trafficking Unit, which seized the items during its investigation of Kapoor.

Disgraced Manhattan Art Dealer Subhash Kapoor Is Sentenced to a Decade in Indian Prison