Last updated: January 13. 2014 3:37PM - 608 Views
Associated Press

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(AP) A former aide to ex-Philippines first lady Imelda Marcos has been sentenced to two to six years in a New York prison after being convicted of scheming to sell a $32 million Claude Monet painting the Philippines government says it owns.

Vilma Bautista also was ordered Monday to pay about $3.5 million in taxes. She was convicted in November of charges including tax fraud.

Defense lawyers Susan and Fran Hoffinger say Bautista has "substantial issues" to raise in a planned appeal.

The 1899 painting is from Monet's "Water Lilies" series. It came into Bautista's possession after the 1986 fall of former President Ferdinand Marcos' government.

Bautista's lawyers say she believed that she had authority to sell the painting and that Imelda Marcos owned it.

Ownership is being determined in civil courts.

Associated Press
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