$1m gold coin struck in Canada stolen in Berlin

A 100-kilogram gold coin struck by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007 was stolen from Berlin’s Bode Museum yesterday at 3:30 a.m.

According to the Canadian Press, the coin was on loan at the museum since 2010 but does not belong to the Mint, which struck a very limited quantity of 100-kilogram gold coins after unveiling the first Big Maple Leaf in 2007. Only five were ever purchased by investors from around the world, and the stolen coin was one of those five examples.

The coin’s owner is unknown at this time; however, what’s known is the coin belonged to one of Berlin’s most most significant numismatic collections, the Münzkabinett collection, which includes more than 540,000 pieces.

Although the coin was issued with a face value of $1 million, its bullion value sits at about $5.4 million today. In addition to its weight of 100 kilograms, the “Big Maple Leaf” has a 53.34-centimetre diameter and a 3.81-centimetre thickness.

The Big Maple Leaf was certified by Guinness World Records to be the world’s largest gold coin in October 2007. Produced at the Mint’s Ottawa facility, the coin features a hand-polished maple leaf design by Mint artist and senior engraver Stan Witten on its reverse. The obverse bears the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by Susana Blunt.

According to a press release issued by Klaus Kandt, head of Berlin’s police department, the thief’s identity—or thieves’ identities—are unknown. Yesterday morning around 4:00 a.m., museum security alerted police after discovering a burglary had taken place and upon learning the 100-kilogram coin was missing.

Police said a ladder was found on the railway tracks near the S-Bahn station Hackescher Markt, and the rapid-transit railway service was briefly interrupted.

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