Qatar museum employee Lou Proud accused of art theft

By AFP
Published: June 28, 2018

PHOTO:REUTERS/FILE

Ms. Lou Proud, former head of the photography department at Phillips auctions who was dismissed in 2015 for racially abusing an art dealer was questioned under caution about the theft of several rare photographic prints. Proud, 46 years of age, is being sued by two parties , including her former employer, for the return of artworks valued at £200,000. Neither Proud nor her lawyer were available for comment. In a separate incident , Proud was threatened with a restraining order by the photographer Alison Jackson after Proud sent dozens of text and emails threatening reprisals for work she did for Jackson but for which she alleges she was not paid. An order for costs has been served against Proud for £250,000 by her former legal representatives Kingsley Napley LLC.

Prior to returning to Doha last week for further questioning Proud stayed in Paris with her long term partner Thierry Marlat , a gallery owner who initially denied knowing about the art theft allegation and refused to confirm if he had been questioned by the police in connection with the allegation. Marlat admitted supplying Proud with photographic prints but denied being implicated in fraud or art theft.

Mr. Marlat insisted in an earlier interview that he had not seen Proud for four years and that being associated with her 'was a liability' . He refused to discuss the rumour that Proud's client , the Swiss banker Bjorn Von Below, was implicated in the art theft allegation.

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