Taiwan museum says fake copies of treasured Buddhist scripture sold to buyers in China

Associated Press, Nov 14, 2011

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A museum in Taiwan says two employees made and sold unauthorized copies of a 220-year-old Buddhist scripture written in the Tibetan language, one of the museum’s most treasured pieces.

In January, the National Palace Museum unveiled 500 copies of the 100,000-page book “Tripitaka in Manchu,” written in gold and painted with Buddha statues just like the original. Each sells for 1.88 million New Taiwan dollars ($62,000).

The museum said Monday that the two employees illegally provided the production technology to a printing firm and sold the fake copies to buyers in China.

The original scripture was produced by China’s imperial Qing dynasty court. The Taiwanese museum took up the reprinting because it was widely believed people having a glimpse of the book would be blessed.

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