Breaking News: Golan and Deutsch Acquitted of All Forgery Charges.
Forgery Allegations Dismissed by James Ossuary Trial Verdict.
The Biblical Archaeology Society has just learned that the District Court in Jerusalem exonerated Oded Golan and Robert Deutsch of all serious charges of forgery. Judge Aharon Farkash stated that there is no evidence that any of the major artifacts were forged, and that the prosecution failed to prove their accusations beyond a reasonable doubt. The allegedly forgeries include the famous James Ossuary, whose inscription reads “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.” Several other ancient artifacts, including the “Three Shekels” ostracon, the “Widow’s Plea” ostracon,and the Jehoash tablet, the first extant royal Israelite inscription, were cleared of charges by the “forgery verdict of the century.”
Wednesday’s verdict ruled that there is no evidence of forgery for the James Ossuary.
The debates on the artifacts’ authenticity will surely continue, but this verdict clears Golan and Deutsch. The academic discourse on the implications of the James Ossuary can now proceed without the impediment of the forgery trial. While all of the major charges were dismissed on grounds of lack of evidence of forgery, others were dropped due to the statute of limitations. However, Golan was found guilty of trading in antiquities without a permit and another minor charge. Deutsch was acquitted on all counts. Oded Golan will be sentenced on December 23, 2012.
See also The Times of Israel:
Archaeology ‘trial of the century’ ends in acquittal of accused forger.
Israel’s state prosecutor charged Oded Golan with forging biblical antiquities. After 7 years in court, the trial ended Wednesday with the collapse of the case…
Read on here.