The US Department of Homeland Security returned ten ancient coins looted from Greece during a ceremony at the Greek consulate in San Francisco in the presence of the Greek Ambassador in Washington Charis Lalakos.
According to Homeland Security Investigations Agent David Keller, the failure of the person in possession of the coins to mention their origin and also their low price had intrigued him and sparked his investigation.
His investigation showed that neither the sender nor the recipient was able to produce the necessary documents to make the transaction legal.
The San Francisco Customs and Border Protection Laboratory then sent the evidence collected to Athens, where it was examined by a department for antiquities law enforcement officer, Orfeas Sotiriou, in Attica. Based on his analysis, the coins had been minted on various Aegean islands and dated to about 600 B.C.
The coins were then returned on the basis of an agreement signed by Greece and the US in 2011 concerning cultural goods and fighting antiquities smuggling.