SPARTA, N.J. (AP) – Police say a handyman stole over $200,000 worth of comic books and artwork from a New Jersey homeowner before fleeing to Italy.

Sparta police Lt. John Lamon said Monday the theft happened earlier this year when a 64-year-old handyman from Brooklyn, New York, was hired to repair a New Jersey home that had sustained water damage. Sparta police say Francesco Bove made off with $239,000 in comic memorabilia from the unoccupied home.

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Authorities say the homeowner reported the theft after a friend told him his pieces were on the market. Investigators say Bove sold multiple pieces from the collection before travelling to Italy.

Authorities say the homeowner has since located most of his stolen art.

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Police say Bove is believed to be in the New York area. A phone number to contact him couldn’t be immediately located.

 

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