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Last Updated: Friday, 10 February 2006, 14:54 GMT
Getty head resigns amid inquiry
Barry Munitz
Mr Munitz agreed to pay the trust $250,000 (143,000)
The president of art body The J Paul Getty Trust has resigned as an inquiry takes place into allegations that the trust's assets were misused.

Barry Munitz resigned with immediate effect on Thursday after eight years.

He received no severance package and will pay the trust $250,000 (143,000) to resolve any outstanding disputes, without admitting any wrongdoing.

"I am taking this action, after lengthy consideration, so both the institution and I can move forward," he said.

'Extravagant spending'

The J Paul Getty Trust oversees the prestigious Getty Museum in Los Angeles, as well as art conservation and research.

A spokesman said Mr Munitz's payment would "resolve any continuing disputes" between him and the trust.

It was the latest blow to the trust, which last year returned artworks that were allegedly stolen from Italy.

The US Council on Foundations - the nation's leading group of charitable organisations - began an inquiry into the trust's financial practices, after a Los Angeles Times report that detailed alleged extravagant spending by Mr Munitz.

In December the council placed the trust on a 60-day probation for failing to provide adequate documentation for its review.

Last year trust curator Marion True resigned a month before she appeared in a Rome court charged with trafficking stolen antiquities.

Ms True, together with art dealer Robert Hecht, denies two separate charges involving 35 artefacts bought between 1986 and the late 1990s.

They include bronze Etruscan pieces, frescoes, and painted Greek Vessels.

The Getty museum has stood by Ms True's work. She left the court after the hearing without comment.

Further problems for Getty Trust
22 Dec 05 |  Entertainment
Ex-Getty curator appears in court
16 Nov 05 |  Entertainment
Greece demands 'stolen artefacts'
25 Oct 05 |  Entertainment
Getty to return disputed artworks
03 Oct 05 |  Entertainment

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