The ALR is the world’s largest private database of lost and stolen art, antiques and collectables. Its range of services includes item registration, search and recovery services to collectors, the art trade, insurers and worldwide law enforcement agencies. These services are efficiently delivered by employing state of the art IT technology and a team of specially trained professional art historians. The worldwide team has been deliberately constructed so as to offer a range of language capabilities as well as specialities (modern art, old masters, antiquities).
Conceptually, there are two aspects to the business.
First, by encouraging both the registration of all items of valuable possessions on the database and also the expansion of checking searches, the ALR acts as a significant deterrent on the theft of art. Criminals are now well aware of the risk, which they face in trying to sell on stolen pieces of art.
Second, by operating a due diligence service to sellers of art and also being the worldwide focus for any suspicion of illegitimate ownership, the ALR operates a recovery service to return works of art to their rightful owners. In recent years, the service has been extended to negotiate compensation to the victims of art theft and a legitimising of current ownership.
The ALR’s pre-eminence in the field of stolen art has allowed the business to be instrumental in the recovery of over £160m ($320m, €230m) worth of stolen items. Some examples of our work can be found here.