The Court of Cassation upheld a decision by the Amman Court of Appeals to
imprison a former Department of Public Antiquities museum director for five
years. He was convicted of replacing 5,972 antique coins with fake ones.
Of the coins,
1,249 were gold, 4,478 were silver, and 245 were bronze, Al-Ghad News reported.
The value of
the original coins was estimated at $1 million. The court fined the defendant a
sum equaling the value of coins, in addition to trial expenses and any other
official was charged with a felony of embezzlement, and a misdemeanor of
counterfeiting and falsifying antiquities.
the court, the accused was the director of the Jordanian Antiquities Museum at
Jabal Al-Qalaa (the Citadel), where the coins were held.
HistoryPreviously, a French
archaeologist submitted a report to the Department of Antiquities stating that
some Ptolemaic Greek silver coins that he had discovered at the Iraq Al-Amir
site in 1993 were replaced and forged.
archaeologist found out the coins were forged when he bought students to Jordan
to show them his discovery.
authorities were informed, a committee was formed by the Minister of Tourismand Antiquities to investigate the coins of Iraq al-Amir. They confirmed that 315
Ptolemaic Greek silver coins in the custody of the accused were all replaced
with fake ones except for one.
submitted its report in December 2015.
Later it was
found that 73 Byzantine gold coins were discovered at another site in Abdoun in
1996. The coins were also in the custody of the accused and were forged and
replaced by metal coins.
amount of coins seized by the accused from the Jordan Antiquities Museum and
their estimated value were based on a committee report at the request of the
Public Prosecutor of the Integrity and Anti-Corruption Commission.
made an inventory of the artifacts, and it was found that some of the missing
coins from the Jordan Antiquities Museum were sold outside the country.
artifact is a golden ring, which after further investigation was found to have
been taken to Israel and from there to Germany, where it was sold during an
auction held in Munich, in December 2018, for 23,000 euros.
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