Jerusalem Court Acquits Antiquities Collector of Forgeries After 7-Year Trial

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In a case that has roiled scholars around the world in a broad range of disciplines, the Jerusalem District Court on Wednesday acquitted an Israeli antiquities collector, Oded Golan, of forging dozens of priceless archaeological artifacts, including an inscription on the burial box, or ossuary, of James, brother of Jesus.

"It is not every day that a court hears a case involving as many topics as this one," wrote Judge Aharon Farkash on the second-to-last page of his 475-page verdict.

"The complexity of the trial derived among other things from the fact that this was the first time that a court was asked to rule on a question of antiquities forgery, especially in the framework of a criminal trial," he said.

During the seven-year trial, the court heard testimony from experts in archaeology, the Bible, chemistry and geochemistry, geology, grammar and language, paleography, and more....

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