Monday 26 September 2016

Imelda Marcos' seized jewels to be sold at auction

Published 15/02/2016 | 04:26

An item from Roumeliotes Collection, one of three sets of the Marcos jewellery collection (AP)
An item from Roumeliotes Collection, one of three sets of the Marcos jewellery collection (AP)

The jewellery collection of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos' widow Imelda, which international experts estimate to be now worth at least £14.5 million, is to be sold at auction.

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The staggering hoard was seized when Marcos and his family fled to Hawaii in 1986 following a popular revolt that ended his two decades in power.

It includes a barrel-shaped diamond worth at least £3.5 million and a Cartier diamond tiara many times more valuable than the previous estimate of £20,700- £34,500.

Andrew de Castro of the Presidential Commission on Good Government, an agency tasked to recover the Marcos' ill-gotten wealth, said it hoped to hold the exhibit and auction before the end of President Benigno Aquino's term in June.

The government's privatisation council, headed by the department of finance, approved the sale of the jewellery last week.

A portion of the collection seized at the presidential palace when the Marcoses fled is still being contested in court. Other items were seized in Hawaii and at Manila's airport.

"The jewellery confiscated from the Marcoses remain a singular manifestation of the misguided priorities of the Marcos presidency during his reign," commission chairman Richard Amurao said.

Press Association

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