|Angkorian gold jewelry that found its way to London in 2017 was returned to Cambodia after the government intervened to stop a planned sale. Cambodia’s Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts petitioned to return the Angkorian artifacts.
|They originated from the Khmer empire, a power in Southeast Asia from A.D. 802 to A.D. 1431. It once included much of today’s Cambodia, Thailand, Laos and southern Vietnam. After decades of war, Cambodia lost countless priceless historical artifacts to looters and smugglers who targeted ancient sites. The Khmer Rouge and other military groups often controlled looters in their areas.|
Looting artifacts has a history almost as old as the items themselves. The earliest known trial of looters in Egypt took place in Thebes in 1113 B.C.