Israeli Police Nab Thieves Who Stole 1,900-Year-Old Document

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Undercover Israeli officers foiled an attempt by two Palestinian men to sell an ancient, valuable papyrus document on the black market, police said Wednesday.

The men were arrested at a Jerusalem hotel Tuesday after a sting operation lasting several weeks, police said. The 1,900-year-old Hebrew document, previously unknown and valued at millions of dollars, was rescued, and police showed it to reporters.

It was unclear where the two men obtained it, police and archaeologists said. Similar documents have been found in caves in the Judean Desert near the Dead Sea, where they have been preserved over the centuries by the dry climate, they said.

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