Antiques and the Arts Online on Smiley’s Sentencing

Antiques and the Arts Online’s article on Forbes Smiley’s sentencing contains some information not seen in other coverage. It doesn’t hurt that it lacks the gosh-wow factor inherent in so much mainstream coverage, where reporters stand in awe of the maps’ age and value. It touches upon the recoverability of and alleged damage to the stolen maps, the financial impact on dealers who bought back stolen maps from their customers — and this tidbit about the libraries’ record-keeping, which could not have helped their case for a stiffer sentence:

In his sentencing memorandum of September 20, Schmeisser touched on one of the case’s most sensitive questions: how the maps could have been stolen in the first place and why libraries often failed to notice that they were missing. Wrote the prosecutor, “On more than one occasion, a library asserted a map had been stolen by Smiley only to find the map a week or even several months later in the library’s collection. In a number of instances, the libraries found maps missing from volumes that Smiley had not accessed, suggesting again either cataloging problems or other thieves.”

The prosecution on whether Smiley is fully cooperating:

“One lingering question,” said the assistant US attorney, was whether Smiley was “telling the whole truth but not the whole story. The government’s best assessment is that he is making the best effort to be truthful, but at the margin there may be a theft that he cannot recall and thus a map never returned.”

The prosecution’s sentencing memorandum was covered previously, but we didn’t see the full text.