North Wildwood man steals over $2.4M in ‘error coins’ from mint
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    North Wildwood man steals over $2.4M in ‘error coins’ from mint

    NORTH WILDWOOD, NJ — William Gray, 64, of North Wildwood, who served as a police officer for the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia for over 15 years, on Sept. 8 admitted to stealing $2.4 million worth of error coins and selling them to a coin distributor in California.

    From June 1996 through January 2011, Gray was employed as a police officer at the U.S Mint in Philadelphia.

    According to a report from the U.S. Attorney's Office, beginning around 2007, Gray regularly took several small bags to the coining area, where Presidential $1 coins were made.

    The minting of these coins is a two-step process; the initial stamping imprints the obverse side of the coin, heads, and reverse side, tails, and a second stamping imprints the edge lettering. Gray admitted he took Presidential $1 coins with the missing edge lettering because they would be considered more valuable to coin collectors.

    He said he smuggled the error coins out of the Mint and eventually shipped them to a coin distributor in California from the Rio Grande Post Office, or from a Fed Ex location in Egg Harbor Township.

    Gray reportedly received approximately $2.4 million for the error coins and the coin distributor sent all the payment checks by Fed Ex to Gray's North Wildwood residence. Gray admitted that he deposited the money into his Police and Fire Federal Credit Union account. He said that between 2007 and 2009 he failed to report the sale of the coins on his income tax return, thereby understating his tax liability by over $800,000.

    Gray remains free on $50,000 bail. His sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 20.



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