Liberty Dollar reopens to raise defense funds

Section:

Business Booming After Raid

By Gavin Lesnick
Evansville Courier & Press (Evansville, Indiana)
Monday, December 17, 2007

http://www.courierpress.com/news/2007/dec/17/businessboomingafter-raid/

The Evansville-based headquarters of a company that produces the Liberty Dollar is open again with a new name and a new product.

Liberty Numismatics, formerly Liberty Services, reopened this month to raise money for its legal defense fund and to satisfy customers who continue to want to purchase Liberty Dollars, said company founder Bernard von NotHaus.

The reopening of the headquarters, at 225 N. Stockwell Road, came less than a month after federal agents raided it and took gold, silver, and 60,000 newly minted coins featuring Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul.

The company produced the gold- and silver-backed Liberty Dollar as an "inflation-proof" alternative currency to the U.S. dollar.

The Nov. 14 raid occurred a little more than a year after a U.S. Mint warning that the alternative currency was illegal and in the midst of a lawsuit von NotHaus filed against the mint, arguing that the warning had no legal merit.

Von NotHaus has not been indicted on charges related to the federal investigation, although he said he expects to be arrested at any time.

The decision to reopen and to change the company's name, he said, was largely because of the ongoing demand for the Liberty Dollar.

"We've had walk-in customers every day since we've opened," he said. "People are looking for Liberty Dollars."

Von NotHaus said the name change reflects a change in the company's business model. It is no longer producing new Liberty Dollars, although it is hallmarking and selling already-produced coins with a small handcuffs icon in honor of the raid. The value has skyrocketed since the raid -- at one point $20 Ron Paul Liberty Dollars were selling for more than $250. Von NotHaus said Liberty Numismatics better reflects the collectible nature of the offerings.

Von NotHaus said the change was not done for legal purposes.

"We haven't been indicted," he said. "We can have the same name. But we wanted to do something different."

The hallmarked coins, dubbed Arrest Dollars, are available for prices ranging from $15 to $30.

They are made from Liberty Dollars donated back to the company, von NotHaus said, and will soon be available only on eBay.

And before long, von NotHaus said, they won't be offered at all.

"It's available between now and when I'm arrested," he said.

"So it's a very limited supply."

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