- The Washington Times - Monday, June 26, 2006

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — A dealer admitted in federal court last week he stole nearly 100 rare maps worth about $3 million in a case that sent librarians and investigators scurrying to review collections and recover stolen treasures.

E. Forbes Smiley III, 50, of Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., pleaded guilty to one count of theft of major artwork in connection with the theft of a map from Yale University.

He admitted taking 97 maps over eight years from the New York and Boston public libraries, the Newberry Library in Chicago, the Harvard University library and the British Library in London. The oldest maps dated back to the 1500s.

Smiley was released after posting $50,000 bond. He faces nearly six years in prison, a fine of up to $1.6 million, and will have to pay restitution. The amount has not yet been determined.

Smiley also pleaded guilty Thursday to three larceny charges in state court in connection with the Yale map thefts. He could face about five years in prison based on the state plea agreement, prosecutors said.

With Smiley’s help, most of the maps have been recovered from dealers and galleries.

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