In a matter of no more than nine minutes, hundreds of Celtic coins were stolen from a museum in Germany’s Bavaria region on Tuesday. Officials in the area have mourned the heist as a tragedy, with some calling it a disaster.
The heist took place at the Celtic and Roman Museum in Manching, a city about 45 minutes away from Munich. In total, it’s believed that around 483 coins were taken. Local police have estimated that trove to be worth “several million euros,” according to the Guardian.
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To conduct the heist, the thieves cut off the telephone service and internet connection for all of Manching, making it difficult for anyone with the institution to contact local authorities as the event was taking place.
Herbert Nerb, the mayor of Manching, told the German-language publication Suddeutsche Zeitung, “The museum is actually a high-security location. But all the connections to the police were severed.”
The coins had been discovered in 1999 during an excavation at an archaeological town near Manching. They are thought to date back the 3rd century B.C.E.
On its website, the Celtic and Roman Museum said it that it will “remain closed for the time being.”
Markus Blume, Bavaria’s minister of science and arts, said in an interview with the German press agency dpa, “As a testament to our history, the gold coins are irreplaceable.”