THEY have struck at the Louvre in Paris and the National Gallery in London. Now, art thieves have paid a visit to Batley.
Eight works by Brighouse painter Geoff Riley were stolen in a raid on the art gallery at the Redbrick Mill shopping centre on Bradford Road, Batley Carr.
Mr Riley, 58, who lives at Bailiff Bridge, valued the paintings at about £1,900. He is now appealing for their safe return.
The oil paintings of Yorkshire landscapes all measure about 24in by 18in.
Mr Riley's pieces normally sell for between £200 and £500 each.
He believes the striking artworks could have been pinched by someone who simply liked his style.
He said he felt a strange sense of pride that his work was targeted in the same way those of Vincent Van Gogh and Edvard Munch had been in the past.
"It's hard to capitalise on the financial value. There aren't many markets, unless there are some private customers out there. Maybe they were taken to order."
The eight pieces were taken from the mill some time between January 4 and 11.
Anyone with any information about the pictures, or any art dealers who may have been approached to buy the signed paintings, should phone Dewsbury police on 01924 431059.
Mr Riley is offering a reward of 10% on the value of the paintings, should they be returned.