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Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney attorney Kristi A. Davidson argued last week before a New York appeals court on behalf of a group of investors looking to recoup under a $50 million art loss insurance policy.

As explained in a Law 360 article on the case, Davidson asserted that Renaissance Art Investors LLC’s all-risk policy calls for the insurer, AXA Art Insurance Company, to explain the disappearing artwork.

“The question is, what happened?” Davidson said. “And it’s not for the insured to explain what happened.”

The case revolves around art dealer Lawrence Salander, a major Renaissance art collector who in 2010 pled guilty to 29 counts of grand larceny and fraud. AXA denied coverage, claiming the policies excluded losses caused by the fraudulent acts of anyone entrusted with the art.

Davidson argued that Salander’s guilty plea addressed only the scheme to con RAI into investing in the art collection – and the monetary damages associated with that fraud – and does not explain where, when or under what circumstances the physical works of art were lost.

“If [Salander’s] fraud was solely directed at the monetary investment, not the physical works of art, then it’s not excluded,” she explained.

Davidson also explained why, even if the art had been stolen, the policy exclusion does not apply.