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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Oakland Man Sentenced To Four Years In Prison For Selling Historic Gold Jewelry Box Stolen From Oakland Museum

OAKLAND, Calif. – Andre Taray Franklin was sentenced yesterday to four years in prison for knowingly receiving and then selling an historic gold jewelry box stolen from the Oakland Museum of California, announced United States Attorney Melinda Haag and FBI Special Agent in Charge David J. Johnson.

Franklin pleaded guilty on March 7, 2014. According to the plea agreement, Franklin admitted that, in early 2013, in exchange for money, he gave a jewelry box that he knew had been stolen from the Oakland Museum of California, located at 1000 Oak Street in Oakland, Calif., to another individual.

The jewelry box was stolen from the Oakland Museum on January 7, 2013. The jewelry box was made of California gold and adorned with gold veined quartz, and had been made between 1869 and 1878. The box was recovered by the Oakland Police Department on March 6, 2013, from a business in Oakland and from the individual to whom Franklin sold the jewelry box.

“This prosecution, conviction, and sentence send a strong message that the U.S. Attorney’s Office values greatly, and will fight to protect, the museums and cultural institutions in Oakland and the Bay Area that maintain and display historic items for the public to enjoy,” states U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag.

Franklin, 46, of Oakland, was indicted by a federal grand jury on May 23, 2013, for theft of major artwork and unlawful concealment and disposition of stolen major artwork, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 668(b)(1) and (b)(2).

The sentence was handed down by The Honorable Jeffrey S. White, United States District Court Judge. Judge White also sentenced the defendant to a 3-year period of supervised release.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian C. Lewis prosecuted this case with the assistance of Legal Assistant Janice Pagsanjan. This prosecution is the result of an investigation by Oakland Police Department and the FBI.

(Franklin criminal complaint )

(Franklin indictment )