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People Are Calling Hobby Lobby's Artifacts Trade A Sin

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Photo of Hobby Lobby President Steve Green and an example of one of the antiques in question (Brianna Bailey/ The Oklahoman / StockPhoto)

Some people are saying what this religious family did was a sin, but they say that they just made some "regrettable mistakes."  Who is right? You decide:

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Within the past seven years, Hobby Lobby has amassed one of the largest collections of religious artifacts in the world. About 40,000 objects have made their way into the possession of the corporation's founding family.

When news broke of how quickly founder David Green and his family have managed to amass such a collection, experienced collectors of antiquities became suspicious.

"The sudden appearance in private collections of significant numbers of previously unknown artifacts raises red flags for those who follow the antiquities trade." - The Atlantic

In fact, many of the items in their collection were unknown to scholars and the general public before they turned up in the Greens' possession.

A clay cuneiform tablet, one of the artifacts the owners of Hobby Lobby illegally imported into the United States from Iraq. United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York
David and Barbara Green, co-founders of Hobby Lobby Stores Inc.Associated Press / Hobby Lobby / Tony Gutierrez

Now, the United States has filed a civil complaint against Hobby Lobby requiring them to give up thousands of artifacts that had been reportedly smuggled out of Iraq by the Greens and illegally shipped to the company as "ceramic tiles."

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