Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


US man accused in $5m violin theft gets prison

11 November 2014, 08:20

Milwaukee - The man accused of masterminding the theft of a 300-year-old, $5m Stradivarius violin that was snatched from a musician in Milwaukee was sentenced on Monday to seven years in prison.

Salah Salahadyn, 42, once told an acquaintance that such a theft was his dream crime because of the instrument's value and the ease of grabbing it from a musician walking down the street.

The centuries-old instrument was stolen in January from Frank Almond, a concertmaster at the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, as he walked to his vehicle following a performance. Almond was attacked with a stun gun during the theft.

The instrument was missing for nine days before police found it, in good condition, in a suitcase at the Milwaukee home of Salahadyn's acquaintances. Police said the homeowner didn't know what was in the luggage stored in his attic.

Along with the prison term, Judge Dennis Moroney ordered Salahadyn to serve five years of extended supervision.

The violin theft wasn't Salahadyn's first art crime. He pleaded guilty in 2000 to trying to resell a $25 000 statue to the art gallery owner from whom it had been stolen in 1995. His ex-girlfriend told investigators that while he hadn't stolen the statue, he plotted the theft.

Another man charged in the violin theft, Universal K Allah, was sentenced to 3½ years in prison. Prosecutors said Allah provided the stun gun used to attack Almond.

The musician has said he was lucky he didn't suffer a career-ending arm or wrist injury when he crumpled to the icy pavement that night.

Stradivarius violins were crafted by renowned Italian luthier Antonio Stradivari. Many are owned by private collectors who lend them to top violinists to be played in symphonies. The owner of the stolen violin has remained anonymous.

Experts estimate that 600 to 650 Stradivarius instruments remain, or about half of what the master produced. Although they can be worth millions of dollars, they are rarely stolen because they're catalogued so well that a thief would have a hard time selling one.

- AP

Tags us

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Wilwon Ochieng
Deputy Governor's ally found with...

The EACC has recovered KES 2 million in fake currency from a close ally of Deputy Governor for Tharaka Nithi Eliud Mati. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Mudavadi given permission to join...

Musalia Mudavadi has been ghranted permission by his party to join the CORD Coalition. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
EACC officers raid Deputy Governo...

EACC officers raided the home of a Deputy Governor as theft case continues in court. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
New IEBC bosses to be named Novem...

New IEBC bosses will be named on November 30. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
DP Ruto has spoilt my name, activ...

DP William Ruto has spoilt my name, activist complains. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Apologise for attack on Auditor G...

Apologise for attack on Auditor General, President Uhuru Kenyatta is told by Kisumu Senator Anyang Nyong'o. Read more...