PEORIA, IL –
A local man with a side business of buying and selling items on Ebay made an unhappy discovery this week when the “possible gold doubloons” being sold by “treazrhunter002” that he paid $342 for turned out to be, in fact, a collection of recently minted euro coins.
“Yeah, it wasn’t my best purchase,” said the man, Errol Mulwine, upon receiving the coins and confirming they were not made of gold.
Difficult To Tell From The Picture
The coins, pictured in a grainy photograph against the backdrop of a coral reef, were described as being “of an undetermined European origin, from a location near the Mediterranean Sea.”
After examining the photo carefully for several hours as the auction wound down, Mr. Mulwine emailed the seller repeatedly for more information.
“He said his camera was not working, so he couldn’t send me another photo. But the coins were sold to him by an old man who said they were from a pirate vessel near Kathmandu,” said the Ebay enthusiast and part-time real estate agent.
Interest Was Piqued
Although Mr. Mulwine knew that Kathmandu was in the country of Nepal, hundreds of miles from the nearest ocean and nowhere near the Mediterranean, this information only piqued his interest.
“I realized that either the man who sold the seller these coins was fabricating the story to conceal where he got them. Or, the seller himself was unwilling to divulge their origin. But either way, the coins seemed way undervalued.”
When Mr. Mulwine pressed the seller about how much gold was contained in the coins, the seller said he was not an expert in precious metals, but that the coins looked “extremely gold” to him, and were in “mint to near-mint condition.”
Have To Go With Your Gut
“It’s always difficult to evaluate items from antiquity on Ebay,” said Mr. Mulwine. “I couldn’t examine the coins myself, so I had to rely on the perceptions of the seller, who might not be the best judge of an object’s value.”
“But sometimes it is the least knowledgeable seller who has the most valuable object.”
When the account “krazy4koinz” suddenly began bidding up the price, Mr. Mulwine decided he couldn’t risk letting the coins get away. “In retrospect, they do look a little like euros in the photo, but I would have kicked myself if they had been gold doubloons and gone to another buyer. Those would have been worth a ton of money.”
When the auction closed with a top bid of $342, Mr. Mulwine was notified he was the winner. “I posted the image to my Instagram account saying I made a major score, and one of my friends said they looked just like the coins from their trip to Portugal last summer. So, of course, it was disappointing to receive the package.”
Account No Longer Valid
While the account “treazrhunter002” was not responding to messages as of press time, and had been recently closed according to an Ebay customer service representative, Mr. Mulwine remains hopeful he can send the coins back for a full refund.
“The euros add up to about $46.50 US, so even if I’m not able to return the coins, I’m not completely out of luck. But I’m sure the seller will want to clear this up in case he wants to re-open the account and sell again.”
“Treazrhunter002 is a great Ebay account name. I just don’t see him wanting to give that up.”
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