Doug Duncan, 57, said the 1957 Gibson Les Paul Special was one of eight instruments stolen from his Cannon Falls home in 2002 and he immediately recognized it when it showed up last month on eBay, the Contra Costa Times of Walnut Creek, Calif., reported Tuesday.
"Not only the serial number, but some custom work that had been done on it," he said. "Even the duct tape I had on the handle of the case was still on there. It was absolutely conclusive."
Duncan said he contacted the Goodhue County Sheriff's Department, who then contacted seller Howard Specter of Mill Valley, Calif.
"He's obviously not the person who stole the guitar," sheriff's Capt. Pat Thompson said of Specter. "He had no idea it was stolen. He totally cooperated with the investigation."
Duncan said the guitar was replaced by his insurance company after the theft so it probably now belongs to the firm. The instrument is currently in the hands of investigators.