Twin Cities coin dealer Barry R. Skog has been sentenced to 30 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Wilhelmina Wright for perpetrating a counterfeit coin fraud scheme.
Skog, 68 who pleaded guilty in February, was sentenced in July.
According to the defendant’s guilty plea and documents filed in court, Skog owned and operated a business which engaged in advertising and selling numismatic coins. Skog posted advertisements for coins in a publication called Numismatic News. When potential buyers responded to the ads, Skog would mail them lists of available coins for purchase, many of which were counterfeit.
Skog stole more than $57,000 from his identified victims. SKOG also intended to create additional loss by advertising for sale 275 additional counterfeit coins at an advertised sale value of approximately $235,000.
The Star Tribune reported in 2011, as part of related coverage, that a coin buyer in North Carolina complained that Skog's company sold counterfeit coins made in China. The coins were encased in sleeves that purported to certify their value by the Professional Coin Grading Service. The owner of the grading company, Collectors Universe, sued Skog for trademark infringement in California and won a default judgment of $8,230.
Skog’s prosecution resulted from an investigation by the Minnesota Department of Commerce and the Burnsville Police Department.