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Couple’s $10M backyard gold-coin bonanza could belong to the government

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Gold

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Word last week that a California couple found $10 million in gold coins on their property has set off a Gold Rush of theories over who left behind all that cash.

One is that Jesse James’ gang deposited it in hopes of someday financing a second Civil War. Another claims the coins originally belonged to stagecoach robber Black Bart.

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“Somebody could have buried them and then died before they let anybody know where they were,” said David Hall, co-founder of Professional Coin Grading Service, which authenticated the find.

RELATED: Saddle Ridge Hoard: California couple finds $10M gold-coin bonanza buried in backyard

The theory gaining the most traction this week is that the hoard is made up of most of the $30,000 in gold coins that Walter Dimmick stole from the U.S. Mint in San Francisco in 1901.

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The couple found eight metals cans, containing more than 1,400 coins.

But Mint spokesman Adam Stump said Tuesday the government has done its research and can’t link the couple’s coins to the theft.

Rare coin dealer Don Kagin represents the couple. He says they think someone in the mining industry once occupied their land and squirreled away the coins over time.

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