Picasso, Matisse, Monet Paintings Stolen in Art Heist

Thieves lift seven masterpieces from a Dutch museum.
3:00 | 10/16/12

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Transcript for Picasso, Matisse, Monet Paintings Stolen in Art Heist
And we turn now to news that rocked the art world. A brazen heist, picasso, matisse, monet, seven paintings in all, but did those thieves unwittingly build their own trap? Abc's jeffrey kofman explains. Reporter: Blank walls, empty picture books, all that's left after thieves broke into this rotterdam museum. It was 3:00 a.M. They entered from the back where they could see the paintings through the windows. So much for state-of-the-art security. This museum doesn't use overnight security guards. The alrm did sound, but by the time police arrived, the masterpieces were long gone. What a haul. A picasso, a matisse, two monets, a gauguin and more, as good as art gets. The value? More than a hundred million dollars. Lawyer chris marinello spends his life tracking stolen a. In the hands of these criminals what are they worth? They are absolutely worthless. No legitimate dealer or museum or collector will touch these paintings. Reporter: They may try to ransom them. But officially the art world doesn't pay ransom. And experts say there is no real black market for stolen art. When mona lisa was stolen in 1911, pablo picasso himself was a suspect, but two years later a museum security guard was arrested as he tried to sell the painting to an italian museum for $100,000, a fortune at the time. The reality, less than 10% of stolen art is recovered. If these paintings aren't found quickly, they're likely gone for a generation, or forever. Jeffrey kofman, abc news, london.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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