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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Wed Nov 23, 2022, 01:48 PM

14. This is a tragedy

Since the coins were well documented by the museum, they will be extremely difficult to fence. Celtic gold is a niche area of coin collecting, as a fair amount of historical knowledge is needed to even appreciate the history behind them. What scares many people in the field now is that the gold may be melted down for its bullion value, which may amount to a couple hundred thousand Euros, but nowhere near what they are worth as historical artifacts. On the other hand, there aren't 400 plus collectors of these things knowledgeable enough to pay what a few of them would bring if offered on the market as rarities. But 483 of the same coin at once is no longer a rarity. Their market value would fall due over-saturation compared with the potential demand. The ease with which people familiar with these coins would recognize the hoard coins would be a further deterrent to offering them around for what they are. The word is out in all the newspapers and TV news here. The danger that they could me melted down is, sadly, great.

What is probably correct is that organized crime was involved. The perfect timing and the high tech skill needed to pull this off is not something your average street thug is capable of. German (and European in general) law enforcement has been reluctant to seriously pursue gangs capable of this kind of heist. They are armed, often contain Eastern European or Middle Eastern ex-military, and shoot back. Instead, the EU prefers to institute useless and cumbersome measures controlling (ever more tightly) the amount of cash or gold that can be traded by the general public without a mountain of paperwork. They claim their restrictions are "combating money laundering (they do no such thing)," and give them an excuse to let gangs like the one that pulled off the museum heist do as they please. Today, in Germany, you can't even go into your own bank and ask for change of a 100 bill without giving a copy of your ID and your personal bank account number. This is combating money laundering, they say. If they really want to combat money laundering, they should investigate the numbers of taxi companies, video game parlors, and pizzerias that turn in 400,000 every week in small (5, 10, 20 and 50) bills to their banks, fully declared, saying business is great, even if the places haven't seen a customer all week (I have a friend in the German BKA, their FBI). It's all drug money, of course, but the drug gangs are better armed than the cops here--just like the gangs that break into museums. The cops, with no support from their governments, are understandably reluctant to go up against better-armed and better-trained opponents. It is much safer to demand a sheaf of documents from some 60 year old guy wanting to buy 4 golden pieces of jewelry for his family for Christmas because they cost 2050, and he wanted to pay cash.

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