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Russian customs nabs French nationals red-handed smuggling Stradivarius violin

The violin has been handed over to the customs officers for verification

KURSK, November 28. /TASS/. Border guards have taken into custody some French citizens who tried to smuggle an antique violin with a Stradivarius label out of Russia, the press service of the Federal Security Service’s regional border department said on Tuesday.

The musical instrument, made in 1750, was found during an inspection of a Renault automobile at the Krupets checkpoint near Kursk, in the western part of central Russia. The violin "may be of a cultural and historical value," the press service noted.

The violin has been handed over to the Kursk customs officers for verification.

Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737) was an Italian crafter of string instruments. His best works were the violins made between 1698 and 1725. After 1730, some instruments with a Stradivarius label were made by his sons Francesco and Omobono, some experts say.