AMSTERDAM — Thieves stole two Vincent van Gogh paintings worth millions of dollars in a daring theft Saturday from an Amsterdam museum dedicated to the tortured 19th century Dutch artist.
Alarms went off at 8 a.m., two hours before the Van Gogh Museum opened. By the time police got to the scene, the thieves had vanished, museum director John Leighton said.
Police found a 15-foot ladder leaning against the rear of the building. The thieves had climbed to the second floor and broken a window, police spokeswoman Elly Florax said.
One missing painting was "View of the Sea at Scheveningen," a small picture of a boat setting off into a stormy sea that was painted in 1882. The thickly applied paint contains grains of sand blown onto the canvas from the North Sea beach where Van Gogh worked. It is one of his first major pieces.