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Hearing Date Is Set in Nazi-Seized Art Case

September 11, 2004|From Times Staff Reports

An 88-year-old Los Angeles woman cleared another legal hurdle Friday in her battle to recover six paintings worth about $150 million that the Nazis seized from her family in Vienna in 1939.

U.S. District Judge Florence-Marie Cooper rejected the Austrian government's motion to dismiss the lawsuit by Maria V. Altmann. Cooper set an Oct. 18 hearing to fix a trial date.

The paintings by Austrian artist Gustav Klimt have been on display in the Austrian Gallery. The most famous of them depicts Altmann's late aunt, Adele Bloch-Bauer, a well-known arts patron in prewar Vienna.

Altmann has been trying to recover the pieces since 1998.

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