Tourist who allegedly carved names into Colosseum didn’t know the ‘antiquity of the monument’
Jul 6, 2023, 5:58 PM
(Photo by Antonio Masiello/Getty Images)
(CNN) — The tourist who was filmed apparently carving his name into a wall of Rome’s 2,000-year-old Colosseum late last month has sent a letter of apology to the local prosecutor’s office, his defense lawyer told CNN on Thursday.
“I admit with the deepest embarrassment that only after what regrettably happened, I learned of the antiquity of the monument,” the alleged perpetrator wrote in his letter to the prosecutor, his lawyer, Alexandro Maria Tirelli, told CNN. The tourist’s name is Ivan Dimitrov, his lawyer told CNN.
Dimitrov allegedly scratched “Ivan+Hayley 23” on a brick wall of one of the world’s most precious buildings last week and the act was caught on video.
CNN has reached out to the prosecutor’s office to confirm receipt of the letter but has yet to hear a response.
The lawyer said that the letter was also sent to the Rome municipality, but the Rome mayor’s office told CNN they had not received it.
The tourist is being investigated by the Rome prosecutor’s office for damage to cultural property, the lawyer confirmed.
The lawyer also said that they are hoping for a plea bargain.
Culture Minister Gennaro Sangiuliano tweeted last week that the Carabinieri, a military police force, had “identified the person presumed to be responsible for the uncivilized and absurd act committed at the Colosseum.”
“An act that offended everyone across the globe who appreciate the value of archaeology, of monuments and of history,” he added.
His tweet confirmed that “Ivan and Hayley” are thought to be the names of the tourist and his girlfriend, who was filmed looking on as he carved their names.
CNN’s affiliate SkyTG24 and Italian state media RAI reported Wednesday that the tourist faces a fine of up to 5,000 euros ($5,400) and 15 days in jail.
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