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4,000 counterfeit Louvre tickets seized in Belgium
More than 4,000 counterfeit tickets for the Louvre have been seized in Belgium after museum staff in Paris spotted tourists using forgeries, writes the Daily Telegraph’s Henry Samuel. Suspicions among staff were first aroused on August 12 when a guide accompanying a group of Chinese tourists produced an unusually crinkly ticket. Security staff were told to be vigilant and two days later agents identified several more ‘suspect’ tickets - this time better quality fakes. "They had series numbers and were identical to our tickets in every way," a Louvre manager told French daily Le Parisien. Two people were arrested on August. 19 with a dozen the forgeries. During questioning they provided the name of their supplier, who vanished from his Paris flat before police arrived. At the end of last month, Belgian customs alerted French authorities that they had seized 4,000 forged tickets hidden in a package sent from China. "The organiser or organisers of this network haven't been identified but they appear to have acted with the complicity of several Chinese tourist guides," said the source from the Louvre. The museum said that no fresh fakes have been detected since the Belgian haul. "But the entry tickets are valid for a year. We can expect more fakes to pass through in that time," the source added.