The Nail on Gold Confiscation’s Coffin

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Published : September 23rd, 2007
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Category : Editorials

In a letter released today in response to an inquiry from GATA, the U.S. Treasury Department declared that it has no statutory authority to confiscate gold.

GATA made the inquiry last fall through the office of U.S. Rep. John B. Larson, Democrat of Connecticut, co-sponsor with U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, Republican of Texas, of legislation to require the Treasury Department to obtain the approval of Congress before intervening in the gold market.

GATA's inquiry was prompted by enduring fears and rumors among gold investors about the legal security of their gold, prompted in part by the U.S. government's attempt in 1933 to confiscate monetary gold by presidential decree.

The Treasury Department's letter was dated December 17, 2004 and was received today by Representative Larson's office. The letter was signed by Roberta K. McInerney, the department's assistant general counsel, and addressed to Michael Kirk, Representative Larson's press secretary. The letter reads as follows:


"Dear Mr. Kirk:

"I am writing in response to your e-mail of November 29, 2004, which forwarded a question from a constituent of Congressman Larson's as to whether the Treasury Department could force the redemption of U.S. gold bullion coins at face value, or the surrender of foreign bullion coins.

"In Public Law 97-258 (Sept. 13, 1982), Congress eliminated a statute (12 USC 248 n) which had allowed the secretary of the Treasury to require individuals and others to deliver to the Treasury gold coins, bullion, and certificates. As a result, this statutory authority no longer exists.

"I hope this information is helpful. Please let us know if you have further questions or need additional information.

"Roberta K. McInerney

"Assistant General Counsel

"(Banking and Finance)

"Department of the Treasury

"Washington, D.C. 20220"

Chris Powell

Secretary / Treasurer

Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee

GATA is a civil rights and educational organization based in the United States and tax-exempt under the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Its e-mail dispatches are free, and you can subscribe at GATA is grateful for financial contributions, which are federally tax-deductible in the United States.


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