Two men are facing charges of stealing or damaging more than $8 million in rare books and materials from the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh over more than two decades.
Investigators on Friday charged Greg Priore and John Schulman with the crimes, alleging the two men worked together to remove the items from the Oliver Room.
According to the criminal complaint, Priore worked as the manager and sole archivist of the library's Oliver Room, which houses rare books and items, for 25 years before being fired in June 2017. Schulman is the co-owner of Caliban Book Shop in Oakland, which specializes in rare books.
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The Oliver Room closed more than a year ago once authorities discovered the thefts.
Priore first contacted Schulman about the scheme in the late 1990s, according to the criminal complaint. Priore allegedly told police he made between $500 and $3,000 for items he stole and gave to Schulman to sell.
At one point, Priore allegedly told investigators, "I should have never done this. I loved that room, my whole working life, and greed came over me. I did it, but Schulman spurred me on."
Carnegie Library spokesperson Suzanne Thinnes released a statement to WPXI news reporter Aaron Martin:
We are grateful the investigation into the Oliver Room theft has resulted in arrests, however we are deeply disappointed that at the center of this case are two people who had close, long standing relationships with the Library. We look forward to the appropriate individuals being held accountable to the fullest extent of the law. We will continue to cooperate with the DA's office and deeply appreciate their efforts to recover the stolen materials. The District Attorney will release information as appropriate as the case progresses through legal proceedings. We would like to thank our community for their support throughout this lengthy and complex investigation. We have been asked not to comment further until legal proceedings are complete.
Both Priore and Schulman are facing numerous charges including theft and conspiracy.