In a ceremony at Thailand's National Museum, the kingdom's culture minister, accepted from the highest ranking American diplomat in the country,hundreds of artifacts.
The majority of the pottery, bronze items, stone tools, beads and sandstone molds were taken from the Ban Chiang UNESCO World Heritage site in northeast Thailand.
The Neolithic settlement and burial ground was badly looted in the early 1970s.
“Of the artifacts returned to Thailand, we can say that the 554 pieces, most of them are priceless because they are dated to a pre-historic period."
The collection was found during a raid on a Southern California museum in 2008 after a five year, undercover federal investigation.
We've been working for a number of years to give this a focus,give this special priority,and today we've succeed in returning some 7 thousand cultural artifacts to over 30 countries.
Most recently here in the region, I would say Cambodia as the case,we were able to return very important cultural artifacts in Mongolia.
These are among the first items to be returned to their homeland after raids on a total of four California art museums and two antiquities dealerships.
Authorities worry that many pieces of pottery and other artifacts from Ban Chiang-considered by many one of Southeast Asia's most important prehistoric settlements-will never be recovered.
1.hundreds of 数以百计的；数百名
Students often travel hundreds of miles to get here.
Hundreds of tightly rolled newspapers were set aflame among the 50,000 crowd.
2.burial ground 坟场；墓地
Together with a few square feet of burial ground.
Ireland's first natural - burial ground won planning permission last month.
3.return to 回到；返回
Ford never desisted from trying to persuade him to return to America.
The pilot wisely decided to return to Farnborough post haste.