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Saddam Hussain's bronze statue buttock 'hidden in Derby'

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The buttock from the famous bronze statue of Saddam Hussain has reportedly been hidden in a secret location in Derby.

Ex-SAS soldier Nigel Ely, 52, picked up the 2ft piece of the statue after it was hauled down in April 2003, Derby Telegraph reports.

Ely put the object up for auction in October but it failed to meet its £250,000 reserve. He then signed it over to Derby-based war relic dealer Trebletap, but the Iraqi authorities have since lobbied for its return as a "cultural antiquity".

Nigel 'Spud' Ely founder of Trebletap War Relic Art, and former 22nd Special Air Service soldier, with the left buttock of the Saddam Hussein statue

© PA Images / Daniel Law/PA Wire



"I'm quite cheesed off about it, really," he told the newspaper. "Why the Iraqi government are wanting it back now, I don't know.

"In my point of view, until we can find the legal position of the item, then hiding it is the best thing to do."

Jim Thorpe, director of Trebletap added: "As far as Trebletap is concerned, the item is designated for sale to support a very deserving military charity where the funds go directly to the support of injured servicemen who need help now."

A spokesman for Derbyshire police said: "Derbyshire Constabulary can confirm we have spoken to Mr Ely and his agents in relation to the piece of Saddam Hussein's statue he brought back to the UK.

"This follows a complaint from the Iraqi government via the Iraqi Embassy, which was initially made to the Metropolitan Police last week."

Ely has been given notice under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act not to dispose of or alter the bronze buttock until the issue of ownership has been resolved.

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Watch the toppling of late dictator Saddam Hussein's statue below:

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