CVP EXCLUSIVE: A former Hackensack ancient coin dealer with reputed ties to a Bulgarian crew that committed a major coin heist several years ago was indicted by a federal grand jury today on charges of filing bogus income tax returns to the I.R.S.
Gantcho Zagorski, 59, formerly of Hackensack, is charged with “aiding and assisting in the filing of false federal income tax returns for calendar years 2006, 2007 and 2008,” U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said this afternoon.
He will be arraigned once the case has been assigned to a federal judge, Fishman said.
The indictment returned in Newark didn’t refer to Zagorski’s suspected involvement in fencing a vast haul of coins stolen from the Veliko Turnovo Museum in February 2006.
More than 10,000 golden, silver and bronze coins were stolen from the museum’s numismatic fund — among them, valuable artifacts that date back to the time of Alexander the Great.
The coins made their way to Munich through channels that authorities suspected may have involved Zagorski and another Bulgarian coin seller on eBay, CLIFFVIEW PILOT has learned.
According to the indictment:
“Zagorski owned and operated a business that sold ancient coins to domestic and international customers, primarily on eBay, from his residence in Hackensack.
“Zagorski, along with his wife and, at times, his daughter, operated the coin-selling business under the names ‘Diana Coins,’ ‘Paganecoins,’ and ‘Diana Coins, LLC.’
“For calendar years 2006, 2007, and 2008, Zagorski provided his tax preparer with false and fraudulent information by understating the amount of gross receipts and sales earned by his business.
“Zagorski then caused to be filed with the IRS those federal income tax returns for 2006, 2007 and 2008 containing that false and fraudulent information.”
According to Fishman, each of the three tax counts carries a maximum potential penalty of three years in prison and a $250,000 fine upon conviction at a trial.
Fishman credited special agents of Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations New York, the IRS – Criminal Investigation, and the FBI’s Newark Field Office.
Assistant U.S. Attorneys Maureen Nakly of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Special Prosecutions Division and Leslie Schwartz of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit are handling the case for the government.
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