Four men have been charged in connection with the theft of a solid gold toilet from Blenheim Palace.

James Sheen, aged 39, of Wellingborough, has been charged with one count of burglary, one count of conspiracy to transfer criminal property and one count of transferring criminal property.

Michael Jones, aged 38, of Oxford has been charged with one count of burglary.

Fred Doe, aged 35, of Ascot, and Bora Guccuk, aged 39, of West London, have both been charged with one count each of conspiracy to transfer criminal property.

The men will all appear at Oxford Magistrates’ Court on November 28, 2023.

The 18-carat gold artwork, valued at $6m (£4.8m), was stolen in a raid at the stately home in Woodstock on September 14, 2019.

The toilet, entitled America, was part of an exhibition by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan and had only been on display in Blenheim Palace for two days when it was stolen.

Only the flushing mechanism and loo roll were left behind by the thieves and the toilet has never been found.

As it was fully functioning and plumbed in the theft caused flood damage to the palace.

Entitled 'America', it was previously displayed at the Guggenheim Museum in New York where in 2016, 100,000 people queued to use it, leading to a three-minute time limit being imposed.

Senior Crown Prosecutor Shan Saunders from the Crown Prosecution Service said: “The CPS has authorised charges in relation to the theft of a gold toilet from Blenheim Palace in 2019.

“Criminal proceedings against James Sheen, Michael Jones, Fred Doe and Bora Guccuk are now active and they each have the right to a fair trial.

“It is extremely important that there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”