U.S. judgment on forced sales during Nazi era could help in recovery of works

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A recent U.S. court ruling is giving a serious boost to the efforts of those trying recapture lost Jewish-owned heirlooms that were forcibly sold during the Nazi era in Germany.

A U.S. District Court judge ordered a German baroness to hand over the painting as it rightfully belongs to the estate of a Jewish-Canadian art dealer who was forced to auction it off before he fled Nazi Germany in the late 1930s.

Judge Mary Lisi ruled the painting in question rightfully belongs to the estate of Max Stern, a Canadian art dealer who lived in Montreal and passed away in 1987.

The decision is believed to be the first in U.S. history to equate the forced sale of Jewish-owned art in Nazi Germany to theft.

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