French police said they had recovered five masterpieces stolen from Paris museums this summer, including a work by Renoir that was cut from its frame at the Louvre during visiting hours.

Police charged Richard Etoh-Mvondo, a 21-year old Frenchman, with the theft of five master paintings and a small 15th century statue and said he was also responsible for the disappearance of a 1470 portrait of Dodge Francesco Foscari by Venetian painter Lazzaro Bastiani from a Venice museum last Friday.Etoh-Mvondo was arrested Saturday night at his home in an elegant neighborhood of the French capital and confessed he had stolen the five paintings in July as well as a 15th century wooden statue that had disappeared at an earlier date.

He told police the works were hidden in Lyon, according to sources close to the investigation.

Jacques Sallois, director of Museums of France, said he would introduce new security technology in French museums and ordered five small museums in Paris closed.