World-renowned expert's £100,000 coin collection stolen in London burglary

Asia's Tech News Daily

Dominik Kuzio burgled the home of coin expert Simon Bendall (MPS)

A burglar who stole a £100,000 collection of antique coins while ransacking the Pimlico home of a world-renowned expert has been sentenced to four years in prison.

Dominik Kuzio, 31, swiped Byzantine coins, watches, spoons, and medals when he broke into the apartment of Simon Bendall in February 2018.

Mr Bendall, one of the world’s leading scholars on antique coins, returned home from an afternoon at the pub with friends to discover his home had been invaded and his collection“>coin collection – amassed over a lifetime – was gone.

Kuzio was linked to the raid by DNA but skipped bail after his arrest and is now on the run. After being tried and convicted of burglary in his absence, he was handed a four-year prison sentence.

Mr Bendall’s collection of coins has not yet been found, and he died, aged 80, in June 2019 before anyone had been brought to justice for the burglary.

“Though I’m glad we have secured this conviction and sentencing, the outcome is bitter-sweet while Kuzio is outstanding”, said investigating officer Detective Constable Samuel Turner.

“Mr Bendall never saw the man guilty for the theft of his life’s work convicted, nor did he ever see the return of his collection. The property has never been recovered.

“Any burglary is a heinous crime because it is so callous and invasive, but in this instance it is all the more upsetting for Mr Bendall’s family because the treasured items that were stolen were so personal to him. His interest in ancient coins was sparked as a teenager and it was a passion that he enjoyed throughout his life.

“My direct advice to Kuzio would be to do the honourable thing and give yourself up. It is only a matter of time before you are found, and this sentence is still going to be there when you are.”

Kuzio was set free by police after first being questioned about the break-in, and he failed to comply with the terms of his bail. He was arrested and charged with another crime last year, but was again given bail by the court before going on the run.

Police believe the thief may still be in the UK, but suspect he could have travelled to Poland.

Kuzio, of no fixed address, was convicted of one count of burglary.

Scotland Yard has asked anyone with information to call 101 or tweet @MetCC ref CRIS 6507683/18.

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