There may be some antiques from P.E.I. in the roughly 1,300 items seized from an alleged thief in Nova Scotia, says a spokesman with the Halifax RCMP.
Cpl. Scott MacRae said the RCMP has been looking for help from the public to identify the items’ owners, including through the force’s website.
“Some of the investigation has led investigators in the direction of P.E.I.,” he said.
When the police pulled the alleged thief over during the summer for breaching the conditions of his house arrest, they found several items in his vehicle, including a letter British Gen. James Wolfe wrote in 1758.
After investigating further, the police determined the letter was stolen and last week they searched a home where they found a small fortune worth of antiques.
MacRae said the 1,300 items basically mean there are 1,300 separate investigations underway to find out who owns them.
“It’s one of the more unique and interesting, I would say, files that we’ve had for a while,” he said.
Although many of the items originated in Nova Scotia, the RCMP believes some came from other parts of Atlantic Canada, including P.E.I.
MacCrae said that as part of the investigation, the RCMP has sent pictures to universities throughout Atlantic Canada and they are working with them, as well as museums and private collectors.
“Some of the items are antiques and we believe were stolen from local people throughout Atlantic Canada,” he said.
UPEI’s security services confirmed to The Guardian it had no reports that appeared related to the seized items.
A spokesman for P.E.I.’s Tourism Department, which oversees the provincial archives, said they have no reason to believe anything was stolen from the archives or artifactory.
In their attempts to find the items’ owners, the RCMP plan to alternate the pictures it has on its website, which on Tuesday featured such items as an antique phonograph, a leather saddlebag and an antique oak door that was installed in the house where the items were seized.
MacRae said the RCMP investigators haven’t determined the value of all the items yet, but some are quite valuable, including a painting worth $40,000.
“It’s definitely into the hundreds of thousands.”
Some of the seized items are available for viewing online at www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/ns and anyone with any information about the recovered antiques can call the RCMP at 902-426-1607.
John Mark Tillmann is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 27 on charges related to the seized items.