By Walter Morris
SAN DIEGO (KSWB/CNN) - Crooks stole millions of dollars in art and jewelry from a home near San Diego. Now, police are now asking for the public's help to find those responsible.
Fine artwork and jewelry worth $5 million was stolen out of a Rancho Santa Fe home.
"From approximately June 17 to approximately until the morning hours 6 am approximately June 18 several paintings, high-end paintings, pieces of artwork, sculptures were taken from the residence," said Det. Brett Garrett.
The thieves took 11 paintings including prints by Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro valued at more than $1 million. The burglars also made off with 20 sculptures worth $3 million and four elaborate diamond, gold, and tourmaline necklace and bracelet sets each worth about $100,000.
Garrett says they need the public's help.
"Should those items go to market in an attempt to be sold, it would be our hope that there's somebody out there who would see these," he said.
The thieves may have a hard time unloading the fine art. Experts say the internet has made it difficult to resell stolen items. Popular web sites like LiveAuctioneers.com and Art Loss Register give law enforcement an online archive of what's being sold and its history.
"If it is sold, it's going to be sold for pennies on the dollar and most art sales these days are on the internet because it increases your visibility, everything is done by the light of day so it's making it much harder for art thieves to sell their property," said Steven Demers, vice president of Kaminski Auctions.
Jewelry is a different story. It's a lot harder to track because metals can be melted down and jewels can be sold separately.
"Just as we get better, criminals get better at where to sell their items without being identified so it's a constant game of cat and mouse unfortunately," said Garrett.