Pompeii’s Head of Restoration Investigated for Fraud and Abuse of Office

The House of the Gladiators collapsed in 2010
 after years of neglect. 

Annamaria Cavaco, head of the company commissioned to restore Pompeii, was placed under house arrest.  She is suspected of awarding “irregular” contracts, completing unnecessary work, paying inflated prices, and failing to comply to archaeological standards.  

Police seized €810,000 ($1 million) of assets and banned her company, Cavaco, from doing any further business with public administration.

Cavaco has spent €8 million (almost $11 million) on restoration projects within Pompeii, but the site remains in danger after years of neglect.

Five others are being investigated, including the site director, Marcello Fiori and the director of restoration, Luigi D’Amora.

Cavaco’s arrest occurred one day before the EU had planned to take control of the restoration.  One of the EU’s primary goals is to improve transparency and enforce regulations.

Sources: BBC “Pompeii Restorer Annamaria Cavaco Accused of Fraud,“; NBC Worldnews “EU Steps in to Protect Pompeii from Shoddy Restoration, Organized Crime.”

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