Berlin SWAT raids yield arrests in theft of manhole-sized gold coin

On Wednesday, heavily armed and armored Berlin police carried out a series of raids, arresting four suspects in the theft of a $3.9m, 220lb manhole-cover-sized gold coin from Berlin's Bode Museum in March.

The coin was created by the Canadian mint, and was part of a large exhibit of coins from around the world.

The suspects are between 18 and 20. There is no sign of the coin and it doesn't sound like the cops think they'll get it back, saying "We assume that the coin was partially or completely sold."

The coin, bearing the head of Queen Elizabeth II with an obverse bearing a maple leaf is a reproduction of the original, which was produced by The Royal Canadian Mint in 2007 with a face value of $1 million (Canadian).

Nicknamed "The Big Maple Leaf," the Guinness Book of World Records named it the world's largest coin, according to the mint's website. Its 99.999 percent purity and gold content boosts the actual value to about $3.9 million in U.S. dollars, according today's gold price index.

German police are searching for a stolen gold coin. It's the size of a manhole cover and worth $3.9 million.
[Alex Horton/The Washington Post]