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Live Expert Panel: Following Brexit, will the UK become a center of cultural racketeering?

February 15, 2022

Join us March 1, 2022 at 12:00 PM New York / 5:00 PM London for this Free Webinar

Despite international efforts to shine a spotlight on the deliberate destruction and looting of cultural property during conflict and the international community’s commitment to stopping the industrial trafficking believed to be contributing to the financing of terrorist groups such as Daesh, Al Qaeda and others, illicit trafficking continues in plain sight, seamlessly integrating with the legitimate antiquities market. 

While the EU has sought to address this problem by streamlining import rules and preventing import without proof of legal export from the country of origin, the UK has taken a seemingly opposite approach, quietly revoking the EU Regulation on the Introduction and the Import of Cultural Goods (EU 2019/880) in Great Britain, while adopting it in Northern Ireland. 

What was the UK’s reasoning behind the decision to repeal the regulation (and failure to replace it)? Will this repeal create a gateway to Europe for illicit cultural property through Northern Ireland, where the regulation still applies? And, how can the UK take advantage of this unique opportunity to adopt bespoke practices that fight cultural racketeering? 

Join us for a lively discussion of these questions and more with leading experts in the field of cultural property law, trade, and protection. Dialogue to be moderated by Alexander Herman, Director of the Institute of Art and Law.

Learn More



Read our Think Tank Policy Brief on this topic here


Hear Author Fionnuala Rogers discuss this topic on NPR’s Marketplace.


Read more from The Telegraph and The Art Newspaper.

Meet the Speakers

Sophie V. Hayes

Sophie Hayes has been a Detective Constable in the Metropolitan Police’s Art and Antiques Unit since 2016. She recently completed an MA in Cultural Heritage Studies at University College London.

Alexander Herman

Alexander Herman is Director of the Institute of Art and Law and co-directs the Art, Business and Law LLM developed with Queen Mary University of London. His new book ‘Restitution – The Return of Cultural Artefacts’ is out now.

Tova Ossad 

Tova Ossad established Ossad Art Management in 2019, recognizing a need for quality advice on high-value art transports, efficient registrar practices, Brexit preparation, collection management and advice with appropriate documentation for art collectors and interior design advisory. She is also a lecturer at the Sotheby’s Institute of Art, a member of the Institute of Export, a Recommended Service Provider for the British Antique Dealers’ Association, and an Industry Partner of the British Institute of Interior Design.

Fionnuala Rogers

Founder and Director of Canvas Art Law and Chair of U.K. Committee of the Blue Shield, Ms. Rogers has been working in art law for 10 years, with a particular interest in cultural property and extensive experience in art and heritage in the Middle East, where she regularly works. She is the author of the AC Think Tank Policy Brief “Following the UK’s Repeal of the EU Import Regulation in Great Britain, will Northern Ireland become a gateway to Europe for illicit cultural property? Recommendations for the UK to mitigate this risk and seize the opportunity to strike the right balance.”