There is an extralegal dimension to the appeal as well, in that Italy continues to put pressure on the Getty, and its means of acquisition of the statue.
We may question the Getty's acquisition of the bronze, question where it currently belongs, and even debate the merits of restitution of these objects. However, there is no evidence that this bronze was "looted" in the same way the Euphronios Krater was for example. All reports I'm aware of indicate the fishermen fortuitously brought this up in the Adriatic, in international waters, in 1964. They may have later passed it on to others who smuggled it out of the country, but this is not a looted object.
For noteworthy previous posts on the bronze, see here.
- Martha Lufkin, Greek bronze will stay in the Getty Villa, The Art Newspaper, April 14, 2010.