Good news! Dealer Julian Leidman has recovered much of the inventory that was stolen from him recently. Thank goodness - many thanks to all of the collectors and dealers who kept an eye out for the pieces. The crooks who did this are still at large, however, so dealers, do be careful when traveling to and from coin shows.
Julian penned the following email to friends this week, and he gave me the OK to publish it here in The E-Sylum. Versions of this have also been published elsewhere online.
The engraved 1921 dollar or the booklet that accompanied it have not turned up yet, but Julian tells me he'll know better this week which items have been recovered.
As most of you know, my car was broken into during my return from a show last month.
I received many phone calls about the missing coins, but nothing matched.
On Oct. 29, I received a call from an eastern dealer who does not want to be named at this time. He was being offered some coins and asked me about them. After he had mentioned three coins, I was virtually certain that these were, indeed, the stolen inventory.
I then called the police detective that had been working on the case and gave him the information. 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.
After nearly an hour, 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 2 X 2's and I don't think that any had been broken out of their encapsulation, either.
The following Tuesday, I went to examine the coins more closely and found over 1700 coins and 300 notes in the custody of the FBI. The vast majority of the volume was there. There were some notable items missing.
The following week, the FBI made another visit, but no items were found. On Nov. 12, the FBI called and said that they were going to get some more coins and on a subsequent call, I was told that more coins including at least one item that I had noted as still missing, previously.
I have not been to examine this second group of coins yet, but will do so in the very near future.
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.
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. Many of my colleagues in the PNG also added to this fund and I will be eternally in their gratitude, as well.
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 Numismatic, the various dealer networks, as well, and of course the message boards on CU and NGC. Doug Davis of the NCIC offered me his good offices, as well.
The law enforcement agencies, from the local police to the FBI, have been true professionals and are continuing to be as supportive as possible. I will probably never be able to properly express my appreciation to them either.
To read the earlier E-Sylum article, see:
COIN DEALER JULIAN LEIDMAN VICTIM OF VEHICLE BURGLARY
THE BOOK BAZARRE
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