David Walters filed the complaint with the Clark County Justice Court on Nov. 27, and by time police notified the pawn shop on Dec. 5, the gold pieces had already been melted down, Radar Online reported.
Walters' niece, Jennifer Beckman, allegedly stole the gold coins over a period of time and sold them to the pawn shop. She was given a total of $12,375 for the coins, police said.
Nevada law says pawn stores must hold pawned items for 30 to 90 days in the event the original owner wants to buy them back. Coins are not subject to that particular law, though.
"In a fast-moving shop, particularly our shop, because of its fame, you move things quickly. We go through them," said the shop's spokeswoman, Laura Herlovich. “If the grader is not someone we trust, the cases are cracked open and the coins are sent out to be melted down. That was the case here. I don’t know for sure, but I believe a majority were melted down. They weren’t worth what he [Walters] thought they were worth.”