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The Baltimore Coin Test Case: The List

I have commented before about the Baltimore Coin Test Case. Readers will remember the way that coins were seized on July 20, 2009 after they had entered the USA via a British Airways flight on April 15, 2009. The importer was unable to supply "additional certification" or relevant evidence.

A little more detail is emerging (Civil Action No. CCB 10-cv-00322; Defendants' Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion to Dismiss or, in the Alternative, Motion for Summary Judgment [filed June 25, 2010]; original ACCG case here [filed February 11, 2010]; ACCG amended July 15, 2010). It appears that the coins were purchased from a London dealer: to be precise, from Spink, on, or around, April 7, 2009. They are described as follows:
The collectors’ coins consisted of twenty-three (23) ancient Chinese and Cypriot coins valued at $275.00.

They are described as:

  • 3-Knife shaped coins
  • 12-Chinese coins
  • 7-Cyprus coins

I understand the invoice describes them as follows.


  • (2) Cyprus, Unattributed bronze coins, Roman period. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $10.00.
  • (1) Cyprus, AE 28mm, Augustus, 27 BC - AD 14, Head of Augustus right / CA within laurel wreath. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $55.00.
  • (1) Cyprus, AE 22mm, Ptolemaeus, King of Cyprus, 81-58 BC, Head of Zeus Ammon right / Eagle standing left. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $25.00.
  • (1) Cyprus, AE 30mm, Severan era. AD 193-217. Laureate bust of Severus right / uncertain radiate bust right. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $30.00.
  • (1) Cyprus, AE 24 mm, Tiberius, AD 14-37. Head of Tiberius right / head of Augustus right. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $40.00.
  • (1) Cyprus, AE 24 mm, Tiberius, AD 14-37. Head of Tiberius right / Livia seated right.  No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $40.00.


  • [6] China [??] bronze coins more than 100 years old. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $21.00.
  • (2) China, Zhou Dynasty knife shaped coins ca. 300 B.C. One is broken. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $25.00.
  • (1) China, Zhou Dynasty spade shaped coin ca. 400 B.C. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $10.00
  • (3) China, Han Dynasty Wu Shu type coin ca. 100 BC - AD 220. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $9.00.
  • (3) China, Western Han Dynasty Ban Liang coins ca. 200 - 150 BC. No recorded provenance. Find spot unknown. FMV $9.00.

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