Greece wins Swiss court case over ancient coin

Officials say a Swiss court has ordered the confiscation of a very rare ancient silver coin that was allegedly illegally excavated in northern Greece and sold at auction in Switzerland.

The lawyer representing Greece in the case said Thursday the ruling in October opens the way for the early 5th century B.C. coin’s return to Greece.

Ilias Bisias says the Swiss court treated the coin as a product of criminal activity that was illegally dug up in Greece and exported.

The high-denomination octadrachm ? or eight-drachma ? coin was struck by a little-known Thracian ruler named Mosses. His currency is very rare.

Greece, where cultural heritage theft is a major problem, has to provide a legally binding verdict on the circumstances of the coin’s discovery before it can be returned.

[Associated Press]

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