Attorney says former client can ID man in Gardner video

A Quincy attorney says he has information about the identity of a man captured on video visiting the Isabella Stewart Gardner museum the night before the biggest art heist in history.

On Monday, George Burke told the U.S. Attorney’s office that his former client recognized the previously unidentified individual as “a fellow who used to mention Myles Connor and [William] Youngworth.’’

A “notorious art thief,’’ Connor was long suspected of having played a role in the Gardner theft, according to The Boston Globe. Youngworth once claimed he could lead investigators to the stolen art.

“This lead – like the dozens of other leads we’ve received – is being thoroughly vetted,’’ said Anthony Amore, the museum’s chief investigator. “We are incredibly grateful to everyone who has come forward to offer their help.’’

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Burke said his former client – who works in the antiques business – watched the video with a co-worker.

“They both recognized him,’’ Burke said. “At one point for a split second, the video shows a glimpse of the face. They both concluded it was him.’’

Burke, a former Norfolk County district attorney, said his client is so “deathly afraid’’ that he doesn’t even want his name revealed to authorities.

Burke told Boston.com that he once recovered a stolen Rembrandt from Connor.

“The head of the State Police came to me and I struck a deal,’’ Burke said.

Last week, the U.S. Attorney’s Office released a six-minute surveillance video and asked the public for help in identifying a man captured entering the museum at 12:49 a.m. on March 17, 1990. At almost exactly the same time on March 18, thieves dressed as Boston Police officers entered the same door, handcuffed two museum guards, and left with 13 pieces of art now valued at over $500 million, according to law enforcement officials.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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