Anti-collector, archaeo-bloggers Paul Barford and David Gill are hyping a story about an auction of medieval Bulgarian coins being stopped by the authorities. See http://paul-barford.blogspot.com/2010/11/cng-bulgarian-police-bust-illegal.html
To help set the record straight, Eric McFadden, a director at the firm, has provided this information:
CNG's Electronic Auction No. 244, which closed on 10 November 2010, offered over 600 lots of coins, among which were 10 lots of medieval Bulgarian coins which had been consigned to CNG by a private collector. This auction was one of CNG's normal electronic auctions which CNG holds every two weeks with approximately 500-700 coins per auction.
On 5 November, CNG's London office received a faxed letter from the Bulgarian Embassy in London notifying CNG that "The Bulgarian authorities have reasons to believe" that one of the lots in the CNG auction was part of a collection reportedly stolen in Bulgaria in 2007, and requesting CNG to withdraw the Bulgarian coins from the auction in order to allow the Bulgarian authorities to further investigate the matter.
CNG replied the same day, informing the Bulgarian Embassy that CNG would withdraw all 10 lots of Bulgarian coins in the auction, would hold those coins in CNG's US office, and would turn the coins over to the rightful owner or the proper authorities if the coins are shown to have been stolen.
CNG takes very seriously any indication that coins in CNG's possession may be stolen and thanks the Bulgarian Embassy for bringing this information to CNG's attention. CNG now awaits further information from the Bulgarian authorities to establish the proper ownership of the coins.
Since 5 November, CNG has received no further communication from the Bulgarian authorities.
CNG should actually be commended for its cooperation with the Bulgarian investigation.