Platinum ‘Sponge’ Stolen

Law enforcement authorities have asked the Jewelers’ Security Alliance to alert the jewelry industry to an incident that occurred on or about April 30, in which 240 pounds (111 kilos) of platinum “sponge” was stolen from a cargo warehouse at Philadelphia International Airport.

The platinum sponge, which is defined as “a porous mass of metallic particles,” looks like brown/gray dirt, is quite heavy, and is almost pure platinum, according to the JSA Crime Alert electronic newsletter.

It has also been reported that two black males approached a retail jeweler in Philadelphia and sold him a small quantity of this material, JSA reports.

Law enforcement authorities advise jewelers that if they are approached by someone selling this material, they should contact police immediately, if that is possible, or, if delay is needed, to tell the seller that he may have a buyer, but it will take a day or two to contact that person. JSA is also requesting that any retailer being contacted about this stolen platinum to contact them.

Delta Airlines is offering an award for its recovery.