Judge Announces Forgery Trial Sentence

Israeli government may retain antiquities involved in the case

Despite a verdict clearing Oded Golan of all counts of forgery, today's sentence reflects the IAA"s reluctance to return the artifacts to the collector.

After a decade of inquiry, a seven-year long trial and a March 14th, 2012 verdict declaring defendants Oded Golan and Robert Deutsch not guilty on all counts of forgery, the James Ossuary forgery trial is not over yet. This morning, Jerusalem District Court Judge Aharon Farkash gave the Israeli government 30 days to support its claim to retain the James Ossuary, Jehoash Tablet and other Israeli antiquities. After the verdict was given, Israel Antiquities Authority prosecutor Dan Bahat petitioned against the return of artifacts to collector Oded Golan, stating that they should be confiscated by the government. After the government brief is filed in the upcoming 30 days, Golan will have 15 additional days to reply before the court makes a final decision.
Oded Golan

Oded Golan

The initial verdict found Oded Golan guilty of three minor non-forgery claims associated with the case. He was sentenced to one month in jail and was given a 30,000 shekel fine today, equivalent to about $8000. Golan will not have to serve any of the prison sentence, due to time served at the beginning of the case. While Judge Farkash previously suggested that the IAA was going over the top when pushing for maximum sentencing for Oded Golan, * today’s verdict implied a new relationship between the Israeli government and collectors. The decision appears to suggest that collectors, like antiquities dealers, should be regulated by the government.

** The Troubled Return of the James Ossuary


Biblical Archaeology Review and Bible History Daily have published an extensive collection of articles and blogposts on the forgery trial. Read BAR editor Hershel Shanks’s authoritative post-verdict analyses in the BHD post “Verdict: Not Guilty.

Get the complete picture of the verdict through Bible History Daily’s “James Ossuary Forgery Trial Resources Guide.

Download a FREE eBook “James, Brother of Jesus: The Forgery Trial of the Century” featuring BAR editor Hershel Shanks’s post-trial analyses along with the original scholarly publications on several of the alleged forgeries.

Posted in Artifacts and the Bible, Inscriptions, News.

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  1. susan says

    There should be a maximum sentence as an example to others. To forge a Godly item is not only a crime in this physical world, but a crime in the spiritual world as well. He will pay either way.

  2. Lorita says

    apparently that comment is from an IAA appointee. Listen! The verdict is ‘not guilty’!

  3. Scott says

    Well, what an interesting situation. Reminds of of Nikola Tesla, who was said to be a “kook” rather than the greatest scientist to ever live. But when he died, Government agents were all over his papers (on science) and kept a number of those papers. either they suddenly were fascinated by kooks or he really was a scientist whose work was not only essential, but perhaps preferred to be kept “classified.”

    NOw the IAA, who says the artifacts are frauds, now wants to keep the items, oh, to protect innocent collectors, no doubt, from being defrauded. Or could it be they want to keep the items and then later suddenly see new light and declare them full fledged legitimate artifacts of antiquity.

    If indeed, they are not authentic, Golan has every right to receive them back and since the IAA has pronounced its decree of fraud, no one can be fooled any longer. They still have a right to by known authenticated forgeries, if that is their thing.

    The insincerity of the IAA is so transparent. They also remind me of the USA FDA, who call wonderful cures a fraud, and promote harmful legitimate drugs and treatments. Oh, politics, how deceitful ye are.

  4. Wardell says

    Why is Israel trying to suppress evidence supporting the life of Jesus? Why is Talpiot Tomb, not open to research?

    Let Archeologists research Jesus in Israel.
    What iss the date of the Talpiot Tomb?
    When did Jesus die?

  5. Carl A. says

    #3: as the case proceeded, there is no doubt that information about the Talpiot Tomb was included in testimony. The James ossuary was missing from the Talpiot 10, and it had the exact same measurements. Odes Golan is not getting it back because it was stolen property.
    And #4: Why is Israel trying to supress evidence supporting the life of Jesus, and the Talpiot Tomb? Because the evidence shows that Jesus didn’t rise from the dead, and he had a child with Maria Magdelana. This is suppressed so that Isreal may continue to receive support from the US’s Fundamentalist Christian Right, and thus, the US Government. Israel already lost allies Great Britain, and France, and they don’t want to lose the US.

  6. Samantha says

    Too late agnostics and sceptics, Jesus is risen and I personally have seem Him, and so will every human being, saved and lost souls – when you breathe your last and step out of your shell & time and ushered into eternity. These so-called artefacts are indeed frauds – for the simple reason that Lucifer the Deceiver of the Lost , knows that his time as Usurper and Imposter ‘god’ is running out. Lucifer’s useful idiots – Atheists , the Global Elites, Masonic Mafia, Illuminati – are inciting this insanity. Why oh why do these ‘useful idiots’ not spend a moment of their time attacking false religions such a Buddism, Paganism, Satanism, Islam, Communism, Humanism, Secularism, Darwinism, Mormonism and every other ‘ism’. Answer – Lucifer the Deceiver is the author of all false diabolical religions of the world, diverting their attention away from true salvation and the One True God.

Continuing the Discussion

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