Further Thefts at Royal Coin Cabinet Brought to Trial

Written by Ursula Kampmann
Translated by Leonie Schulze

December 20, 2018 – After an interview with the public prosecution department, SVT Nyheter reported on December 13, 2018 that another former employee of the Royal Coin Cabinet was being prosecuted. He is under the suspicion of having stolen coins worth 3.8 million SEK (= 370,000 euros). The actual value might be even higher. The stolen pieces include both Swedish and foreign rarities. A Russian family ruble from 1836/7 is also amongst the stolen coins. A piece just like the one that is now missing from the coin cabinet was consigned to an auction by the suspect and sold for 510,000 SEK in 2009. The suspect claims he inherited and bought the consigned coins. The prosecutor does not believe in such a coincidence. He refers to a report by the National Forensic Center: experts there have compared images of the respective coins and believe that it is in fact the same piece.

The Royal Coin Cabinet at the Sveriges Ekonomiska Museum has since been closed. Excerpt of a picture by Julian Herzog / CC-BY 4.0 International.

In 2017 already, a former curator of the Royal Coin Cabinet was sentenced to three years in prison after it was proven that he sold 35 objects – coins, medals, and banknotes – taken from the Royal Coin Cabinet and the Stadsmuseum of Gothenburg to a Stockholm-based coin dealer for 1.2 million SEK.

During the trial, it was already known that that hearing was only the tip of iceberg. Stocktaking before the cabinet was scheduled to move to the Historical Museum had revealed that a total of 1,200 objects worth more than 25 million SEK were missing. The current suspect had already been subject to investigation at the time. Increasing suspicion has now brought him in front of the district court in Stockholm. The prosecutor demands damages for the stolen coins. In order to ensure those, valuable objects that used to belong to the suspect have already been confiscated.

The Swedish article published by SVT Nyheter is available here. It also features an image of the stolen family ruble and the tray it should be placed in.

A few images of the stolen items can be seen in our article published on July 6, 2017.

In 2017, we also reported on the trial which saw both the curator as well as the coin dealer accused of theft.

The verdict was announced in late November of 2017. The coin dealer was placed on probation. The curator was sentenced to three years in prison. At the end of the trial, the curator suddenly claimed he had only committed the crime because he had been threatened. The court considered that highly unlikely. SVT Nyheter reported on it.