(Gilded King Tut statues were among the stolen items from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo)
A lot of things about Ancient Egyptians aren’t known because of looters who ransack their tombs and final resting places. The gold and precious stones used in the decorations that accompany the dead to their afterlife are very valuable to both anthropologists and treasure hunters, so much of discoveries are a race to who gets there first. Many of the treasures taken could hold vital information to some unanswered questions left by Ancient Egyptians, but we will never know because of the successful Black Market of artifacts.
Looters have been around for centuries, and are still going strong. In 2011, Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities released a list of artifacts that were stolen from the Egyptian Museum during the uprisings that were occurring. The list contains 63 items including ritual statues and a fan belonging to King Tut, Yuya’s shabtis, amulets and jewelry.
See http://www.presstv.ir/detail/170244.html for complete story.
The protection of these artifacts is the protection of the culture. Current political demonstrations against Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year-rule threatens that protection, and these artifacts may be gone forever.