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Visitors take a look at the world's biggest and most expensive gold coin, the "Canadian Maple Leaf", on Wednesday, May 28, 2008, at Vienna's art history museum. The coin weighs 100 kilograms and is worth about 2 million euro (U.S. $ 3.2 million). It is one of five such coins worldwide and is on permanent loan to the museum from an Austrian company. (AP Photo/Lilli Strauss)

A gold coin worth millions was stolen from a German museum


A massive gold coin that's in the Guinness Book of Records was stolen early Monday morning from Germany's Bode Museum. 

Police spokesman Stefen Petersen said the thieves entered the museum through a window around 3:30 a.m. and stole the "Big Maple Leaf" coin before authorities made it to the scene. 

Police found a ladder near railway tracks close to the museum and are working to determine whether it was used in the burglary. 

Authorities said they assume more than one person was involved because the coin weighs more than 200 pounds and has a diameter of more than 20 inches. 

The coin has a face value of 1 million Canadian dollars, however, it's worth almost $4.5 million at market price. 

CNN reports that the coin was issued by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007 before Queen Elizabeth II's trip to Germany. It has a portrait of the queen on one side and a maple leaf on the other.

The "Big Maple Leaf" coin made its way into the Guinness Book of Records because of its purity of 999.99/1000. 

The coin has been in the Bode Museum's collection since 2010. 

Petersen did not say whether the crime was caught on surveillance video but added that detectives who specialize in crimes involving art are investigating.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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