New accusations in Veliko Tarnovo Museum coin robbery
Michel van Rijn has a new post on the Veliko Tarnovo Museum robbery of last year, written by Arthur Brand. Van Rijn's site links to this blog because we wrote about Bulgarian reports last year. Brand's post claims to give the names of the robbers. It also claims the coins were moved through eBay sellers 'Pagane' and 'Silenos'.
I haven't been keeping up with the story but there doesn't seem to be anything new other than Brand's accusations. Google has a new News Archive Search; searches there for /Veliko Tarnovo robbery/ offer few details. Most of the details are behind paywalls, and seem to be repostings of the material that came out early last year.
The Sofia Echoclaims to have reported, in April, on calls for the museum director to step down. Apparently he did; in September the Echo suggested that the proposed new director of the museum, Hristo Haritonov, might be underqualified. That doesn't make any sense, because Mr. Haritonov was already the director! Perhaps the dates are wrong on the Echo's web site, or I misunderstood before and Mr. Haritonov did get a promotion in August.
(Mr. Haritonov is a numismatist and writer. His books include Coins in the Bulgarian Folk Culture (c. XV-XVII). He also wrote the paper “Semiotic Aspects of the Monetary Iconography in the Context of the Medieval Bulgarian Culture” which was published in the museum's journal.) I have never read these books and would be curious to know if they are highly regarded.)
Anyway, both the police and museum claim to have photos of the stolen coins. It should be a simple matter to check eBay's records. I would have preferred the release of the photos allowing the public to help in the search. Maybe Brand is wrong and the coins are still out there? It would be wonderful if Brand has cracked the case but I am skeptical. I don't recall these eBay dealers moving a better or different product than their usual offerings any time in 2006.
I look forward to more details as they are uncovered.