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Affidavit: FBI feared Pennsylvania would seize fabled gold

the U.S. Mint
The Associated Press
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Dent’s Run
the Pennsylvania Department of Natural Resources
Knights of the Golden Circle
the Union Army
Finders Keepers

Jacob Archer
Kem Parada
Dennis Parada

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the United States
Elk County

Civil War
the Civil War

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The New York Times
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Federal prosecutors did not oppose the request, and the judge agreed, paving the way for Thursday’s release of documents.“I have probable cause to believe that a significant cache of gold is secreted in the underground cave” in Dent’s Run, holding “one or more tons” belonging to the U.S. government, wrote Jacob Archer of the FBI’s art crime team in Philadelphia.Archer told the judge he needed a seizure warrant because he feared that if the federal government sought permission from the Pennsylvania Department of Natural Resources to excavate the site, the state would claim the gold for itself.“I am concerned that, even if DCNR gave initial consent for the FBI to excavate the cache of gold secreted at the Dent’s Run Site, that consent could be revoked before the FBI recovered the United States property, with the result of DCNR unlawfully claiming that that cache of gold is abandoned property and, thus, belongs to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,” the affidavit said.Additionally, Archer said, a legislative staffer who said he was acting on behalf of others in state government had met with the treasure hunters who identified the likely site and “corruptly” offered to get them a permit to dig “in return for three bars of gold or ten percent” of whatever the treasure hunters recovered.No one has been charged in connection with the case, and federal prosecutors say they consider the matter closed.The FBI had long refused to explain exactly why it went digging on state-owned land in Elk County in March 2018, saying only in written statements over the years that agents were there for a court-authorized excavation of “what evidence suggested may have been a cultural heritage site.” According to the affidavit, the FBI based its request for a seizure warrant partly on work done by a father-son pair of treasure hunters who had made hundreds of trips to the area.

As said here by MICHAEL RUBINKAM