Raphael Merlin reports on his Facebook page that his 1680 Andrea Guarnerius has been held at Charles de Gaulle airport since Monday.
saisie de mon violoncelle ce matin à CDG, en tant que “marchandise prohibée” (“bien culturel”) : 5 heures à la douane, pour rédiger un pauvre PV d’une page et demie.
Raphael was returning home from a US tour with the Ebène Quartet. He has been told that it will take at least a week before the paperwork is processed and the cello, which he has played since 2008, can be considered for release.
‘I made a mistake in not going through the red channel,’ he is reported as saying in The Strad.
UPDATE: And here’s a very rapid happy ending.