About 1,500 masterpiece-level works of art were found in an apartment in Munich, Germany, in 2011, according to a report filed last week by the German magazine, Focus.
The investigation has been an ongoing affair with German authorities.
Art experts claim that about 20,000 works of modern art were stolen from Jewish dealers in Nazi Germany during WWII and that many of the pieces are still missing.
Paintings by Picasso, Matisse, and Chagall are included in the recovered art confiscated by the Nazis. Many of the recovered items are believed to be private property of Jewish families.
Focus reported that Cornelius Gurlitt, 81, the owner of the apartment where the artwork was found, inherited the paintings from his father, Hildebrand Gurlitt, a museum director hired by the Nazis to sell the art. It is believed that the museum director kept some of the paintings for himself. The uncovered artwork found in Gurlitt’s is valued at more than $1 billion.
…."We [the German government] have been aware of the case for a couple of months already and that's why we are releasing the information that we're trying to provide help by arraigning experts," said the spokesman.