Police trying to get to the bottom of the theft of a solid gold toilet from Blenheim Palace have arrested a second man in connection with the crime.
A 36-year-old man from Cheltenham was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to burgle, after thieves ripped the £4.8m artwork out of a wood-panelled room in the early hours of Saturday morning.
He has been released under investigation, as Thames Valley police work to track down the pricey privy. Yesterday, they released a 66-year-old man on bail, also in connection with the crime.
Detective Inspector Steven Jones, said: “We are continuing to investigate this incident and have made a second arrest in connection with it.
“Our priority is to locate the stolen item, and I would urge anyone with any information to contact police by calling 101.
“Anyone with information should quote reference number URN 273.”
Police said they have bolstered security at Blenheim, the birthplace of Winston Churchill, as they continue searching.
Yesterday, the artist who created the 18-carat bathroom throne said he was “praying” the burglary turns out merely to be a prank.
Blenheim Palace chief executive Dominic Hare told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan would be “mortified” at claims he had participated in the theft as part of a Banksy-style prank.
“He would be mortified by that suggestion and has said so. That simply hasn’t happened here,” Hare said.
Some had reacted to Saturday’s incident by speculating that it was a joke in the vein of Banksy’s Girl With Red Balloon artwork, which was sold for £1m at Sotheby’s last year before being shredded in its frame.