Cash4Gold: Don’t Send Us Your Stolen Jewelry

Gold prices are on a record run. And infomercials for venture-backed precious metal jewelry mail-in service Cash4Gold have reached a saturation point in the public consciousness.

Those twin trends seem to add up to a compelling combo for criminals. At least, that is, for the sort too dim to consider that Cash4Gold pays for the jewelry it melts by cutting a personal check.

Last week, a Waynesboro, Tennessee man set a new standard for how not to not to pull off a property crime, after attempting to cash in stolen jewelry by mailing in to Cash4Gold. According to news site Alabama Live, police arrested Tim Holt, 22, last week, after he allegedly broke into a neighbor’s house through a doggie door and stole some gold. Authorities tracked him down after contacting Cash4Gold, which uses a photo system to track the jewelry it receives through the mail.

This isn’t the first time Cash4Gold has featured in a crime investigation. Earlier this year, the company says it flagged a large gold ring, which happened to be a 1995 AFC Championship ring that belonged to former Pittsburgh Steeler Brenden Stai. He had reported the ring stolen in 2000. Cash4Gold says it processes thousands of packages every week and that its security measures include documentation and photographing of each item and keeping records of the checks it sends customers.

Certainly there’s greater motive for criminal types to attempt to profit from precious metals, with the economy still weak and metal prices continuing to soar. Gold prices hit an all-time of $1,190 on Wednesday as the dollar crumbled. Silver, which Cash4Gold also buys was on track to close at a 16-month high, near $18.81.

Cash4Gold, based in Pompano Beach, Fla., raised $40 million early this year, backed by Highland Capital Partners and General Catalyst Partners.