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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 08:22, November 23, 2006
Bulgarian anti-mafia drive prevents antiques smuggle
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Bulgaria's anti-mafia units and Customs agents joined efforts to foil an attempt of a large-scale antiques smuggle on Wednesday, reported BTA.

Over 14,400 ancient coins were found in a train going from Sofia to Vienna. The precious coins were packed in several milk and juice cartons, hidden in a cavity in one of the compartments.

Other antiques, such as ceramic lamps, antique crosses, rings, earrings and tiaras were also discovered, along with figurines, arrowheads, and phallic statuettes, BTA reported.

The whole stash weighed over 67 kilos.

The Customs estimate that each coin is worth up to 1,500 euros (1,920 U.S. dollars).

According to the smugglers, they had planned to transport the antiques abroad to Europe and finally to the United States with the help of European auction agents.

Located on the Balkan Peninsula as the center of the ancient Thracian Empire, Bulgaria once created a brilliant civilization. Archeologists have discovered in Bulgaria numerous antiques from different epochs.

Source: Xinhua

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