By Laura Marrinan
AMSTERDAM - Thieves stole seven pieces of art including works by Picasso, Monet, Gauguin, and Matisse at the Kunsthal Museum in the Netherlands on Tuesday morning, the New York Times reported.
The museum was celebrating the Rotterdam gallery's 20th birthday showing works from the Triton Foundation when the heist occurred, the BBC News reported.
The paintings that were taken include Monet's Waterloo Bridge, Picasso's Tete d'Arlequin, Matisse's La Liseuse en Blanc et Jaune and Freud's Woman with Eyes Closed, according to the BBC News.
The theft was a wake-up call for the museum, the New York Times reported, since the thieves made off with works that were worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
"The alarm system in the Kunsthal is supposed to be state of the art. We've got no reason to believe that it's not but somehow the people responsible for this found a way in and a way out," Roland Ekkers from Rotterdam Police said.
Police that arrived at the scene said the security seemed adequate for the event and that it was clear the heist was well planned out, the Associated Press reported.
Although the paintings are worth a fortune, the thieves will not be able to auction them off since they have been internationally registered as stolen, the BBC News said. They could sell them on the criminal market, but would only make a portion of what they are really worth.
The gallery is now closed to the public, but the spaces where the paintings used to hang can be seen through its windows, the New York Times reported.