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Friday, July 12, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Alleged Picasso Vandal|Surrenders at Border

HOUSTON (CN) - A man accused of defacing a Picasso painting at a Houston museum surrendered to U.S. marshals at the U.S.-Mexico border Tuesday.

A cellphone video taken by a museum patron allegedly recorded Uriel Landeros spray-painting a stencil of a bullfighter slaying a bull, and the word conquista, on Picasso's "Woman in a Red Armchair" last June, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Conquista is Spanish for "conquest."

The 1929 painting, which is valued at several million dollars, has been restored, the Chronicle reported.

Landeros went on the lam after the patron posted the video on YouTube.

His attorney arranged for him to surrender to U.S. Marshals, who took him into custody at the international bridge in McAllen, the Chronicle reported.

In a video he posted online in August, Landeros said he did not intend to destroy the painting but spray-painted it "to turn heads" and "to raise awareness."

"I am sorry for insulting anybody who misunderstood my message," he said in the video.

Prosecutors charged Landeros with felony graffiti and criminal mischief.

He is expected to be returned to Harris County this week.

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