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Leidman coins found after dealer

A tip from an East Coast coin dealer has resulted in recovery of much of the inventory stolen from Julian Leidman.

Leidman told Numismatic News on Nov. 18 that police detectives and FBI agents made two recoveries following a tip from a dealer who doesn’t wish to be identified.

Leidman’s parked vehicle was broken into Oct. 11 as he was returning home to Silver Spring, Md., following a coin show. His vehicle was parked outside a restaurant in New Jersey when its window was smashed and the inventory taken as Leidman ate dinner with family members.

An Oct. 29 phone call from the anonymous dealer to Leidman set recovery action in motion.

“I then called the police detective that had been working on the case and gave him the information,” Leidman said. By late that afternoon he had set up, in conjunction with the FBI and another agency,  a meeting for the next morning to view the coins.

“Early Oct. 30, my son, Sam, and I drove to meet with the assembled law enforcement officers. The original plan was abandoned and the eight officers then went to the place that the coins were supposed to be, while Sam and I waited to be called to identify the items.

“I was called and eventually told that it really wasn’t necessary for me to identify the coins, as my name was all over them. A few minutes later, I went and saw the coins, which were all mixed up, but very few had been removed from the 2x2s and I don’t think that any had been broken out of their encapsulation, either.”

Leidman said that on Nov. 3 he “went to examine the coins more closely and found over 1,700 coins and 300 notes in the custody of the FBI. The vast majority of the volume was there. There were some notable items missing.”

On Nov. 12 the FBI told Leidman they would get some more coins.

“I have not been to examine this second group of coins yet, but will do so in the very near future,” Leidman said.

“As of this date, the original thieves have not been apprehended and I am not certain of exactly what else might be missing. This is an ongoing investigation and I am being as forthcoming as I am able to be at this time.”

Leidman is grateful for the assistance he received following the theft.

“I am unable to express adequately enough my appreciation to the hundreds of well wishers and especially to the many, many, people that pledged money to a reward fund that was started by Jon Lerner and Laura Sperber,” Leidman said. That fund topped $160,000. He singled out his fellow members of the Professional Numismatists Guild for special thanks.

“The numismatic press and the general press gave this a great deal of publicity and I believe that because of this publicity, the coins were able to be identified.  I want to express my appreciation to, in no specific order, Coin World, Krause Publications, the Coin Dealer Newsletter, Heritage Numismatics, the various dealer networks as well, and of course the message boards on CU and NGC,” he said.

Additional thanks were directed to law enforcement agencies.

“I will probably never be able to properly express my appreciation to them, either,” he said.

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