It all happened at the French customs, the officers were warned about a ?25m Picasso belonging to a Spanish banking tycoon, banned from export from Spain, allegedly en route for Switzerland.
The owner was named as Jaime Bot?n, whose family was involved in setting up the Santander bank. Bot?n, 79, was not on the boat, believed to be the three-masted, 370-tonne ?superyacht?, the Adix, which customs officials said was owned by the company and flying a British flag.
Spanish experts say the painting is ?one of the few made by the painter in his so-called G?sol period where Picasso is clearly influenced by the fabric of Iberian art ?that had a decisive influence, not only on cubism, but also on the subsequent evolution of the painting of the 20th century? and was of ?exceptional importance?.