NGC Plays Vital Role in Criminal Investigation Involving $400,000 in Stolen Coins

Posted on 4/19/2023

In the event of a reported theft or loss, the NGC Certification Verification tool identifies NGC-certified coins as “stolen or missing” to protect collectors and dealers.

Assistance provided by Numismatic Guaranty Company® (NGC®) in a $400,000 coin theft investigation has resulted in the arrest and conviction of a Beaumont, Texas, woman on charges of theft of mail by a postal employee. The investigation, which led to a federal grand jury indictment in November 2022, targeted lost coin shipments originating from Universal Coin & Bullion in Beaumont.

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Texas reported that US Postal Inspectors became aware in April 2018 that multiple valuable coins shipped through the Beaumont postal facility had been stolen. Their investigation led them to Pamela Jo Rosas, a postal employee who worked in the facility. After her arrest, Rosas pleaded guilty to stealing hundreds of coins along with cell phones, laptops, and other electronics, from the facility.

Image courtesy of Universal Coin & Bullion.

NGC participated in the investigation by ensuring the stolen coins that were NGC certified were designated in the NGC database as “stolen or missing,” which appears in the NGC Certification Verification tool.

“Without NGC being proactive to identify thefts and missing packages, this case wouldn't have been solved,” said Michael Fuljenz, President of Universal Coin & Bullion. “I am so grateful that NGC provides tools and mechanisms to protect collectors and dealers, which ultimately mitigates the damages of mail fraud.”

Image courtesy of Universal Coin & Bullion.

One of the coins involved in the investigation — an 1845 Dahlonega Mint Liberty Head $5 gold coin — was purchased by a collector at a small Beaumont coin shop, Heartfield's Fine Jewelry & Rare Coins. After looking up the coin using the NGC Certification Verification tool, the buyer realized it was a missing coin and alerted the authorities. That tip led investigators to Christopher Jude Rosas, who had sold numerous coins to the Beaumont shop.

As authorities, led by Oswaldo Fong, USPS Special Agent, investigated Rosas, they discovered he was the son of Pamela Jo Rosas, who was employed at the postal facility that had handled shipments involving missing coins. When it was revealed that Christopher Rojas had sold more than a dozen collectible coins in Beaumont between June and December 2020, investigators made the connection between him, his mother and the missing coin shipments.

Authorities then launched an undercover investigation that involved placing tracking devices in coin shipments. The investigation confirmed that Pamela Jo Rosas was stealing the packages from the postal facility.

Doug Davis, a former Texas police chief who now heads the Numismatic Crime Information Center (NCIC), also assisted in the investigation. NCIC is a not-for-profit organization that serves as an international resource for the numismatic community. It provides education on numismatic crimes and assists in investigations. Through its website, NCIC provides alerts and updates on cases involving missing coins.

As of April 2023, Rosas was awaiting sentencing. She faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison as well as fines of up to $250,000 and forfeiture of assets valued at between $500,000 and $5 million. Christopher Rosas was arrested in May 2021 on charges related to the theft, but he died before going to trial.

Michael Fuljenz praised NGC’s database and Certification Verification tool for providing a convenient mechanism for dealers and collectors to report coins that are lost or stolen. The service, which is not something currently offered by other coin grading services, is one of the many tools that sets NGC apart in the world of coin grading. Fuljenz encouraged others to take advantage of the service and diligently report instances in which shipments of NGC-certified coins go missing.

NGC encourages collectors and dealers to always check its database, which can be accessed via a mobile device, when considering coin purchases. Certification Verification confirms the coin's description and grade, and it allows users to check that the NGC holder has not been tampered with. When collectors discover that coins are considered lost or stolen, they are encouraged to contact NGC Customer Service at 1-800-NGC-COIN. Want to look up an NGC-certified coin? Go here >

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