Millions of dollars in contemporary art was recovered Wednesday after a tipster led Santa Monica police to an automotive electronics store in Pasadena and then to at least two residences, police said on Thursday.
The art belongs to bond-fund manager Jeff Gundlach, whose Santa Monica home was burglarized earlier this month.
"It's a wonderful day for everyone in our county and our city that wants to see law order and justice prevail."
Most of the paintings were found during a search of Al & Ed’s Autosound located at 30 S. Rosemead Boulevard in Pasadena, according to Santa Monica police. The store’s manager, 45-year-old Jay Jeffrey, of Canyon Country, was arrested on suspicion of possessing stolen property.
Detectives were then led to a San Gabriel residence, where investigators found four of the stolen paintings. There, Wilmer Bolosan Cadiz, 40, was arrested on suspicion of possessing stolen property.
The last painting was found at a Glendale residence, police said. The person who had that painting has been interviewed by police and is cooperating with investigators.
Gundlach, the founder of DoubleLine Capital, said the recovery marked a "great day for the art world and all those who seek order and justice in our society."
"My gratitude goes out to Detective David Haro and the entire Santa Monica Police Department for their skillful, tireless and respectful attention to apprehending the criminals and recovering all of the artwork stolen," he said in a statement. "I would also like to thank the many well wishers who offered support and whose optimism over the last two weeks proved accurate."
On Monday, Gundlach offered $1.7 million for information leading to the successful return of the artwork undamaged. It was not immediately known who would receive the reward.
The bulk of the reward – $1 million of it – is dedicated solely to the safe return of “Composition (A) En Rouge Et Blanc,” an oil-on-canvas piece by Piet Mondrian circa 1936. Another $500,000 is for a 1956 Jasper John’s collage titled “Green Target.”
"If the people that turn in the tip were part of the burglary they will not receive a single penny," according to Gundlach. "However, if they were righteous people, they will receive every penny."
Still, not all of the stolen property has been recovered, police said.
Sometime between 3 p.m. on Sept. 12 and 8 p.m. on Sept. 14, burglars made off with loot estimated to be worth $10 million, including a 2012 Porsche Carrera 4S, wine and expensive watches, investigators said.
Gundlach returned to his home in the 500 block of 12th Street on Sept. 14 to find it’d been burglarized while he was away on a trip, investigators said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective David Haro at (310) 458-8432 or Sergeant Henry Ramirez at (310) 458-8453 or the Santa Monica Police Department (24 hours) at (310) 458-8495.