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More than 30 ancient gold ornaments went on show in a Chinese museum this week after Paris quietly insisted a billionaire collector and France's top antique dealer return them on the grounds they were stolen.The move came 15 years after the two men donated the works to a Paris museum following an intervention by France's then-President Jacques Chirac, an admirer of Asian art.Chirac learned of the four ornaments' existence and fell under their spell, but they were too expensive for the French public purse.So he persuaded his billionaire friend Francois Pinault, the owner of the luxury and clothing group Kering, which owns Gucci, Puma and auction house Christie's, to buy the quartet for 1 million euros and donate them to the Musee Guimet, France's national collection of Asian arts.Last year the KODE Art Museums of Bergen in Norway returned seven white marble columns from the Old Summer Palace in Beijing, which was looted in 1860, after another Chinese tycoon donated $1.6 million.
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