Four young men have gone on trial over the brazen theft of a 221-pound Canadian gold coin from a Berlin museum.
His lawyer Marcel Kelz denied media reports that his client had made major purchases, including an 11,000 euro gold chain, and shown interest in buying a Mercedes Benz auto and property months after the heist. The fourth suspect was a museum guard accused of helping them.
The three chief suspects in the theft arrested in July 2017 are brothers Ahmed R., 20, and Wayci R., 23, and their cousin Wissam R., 21.
Police suspect the coin was melted down and sold. They confiscated guns, luxury cars and more than 100,000 euros in cash.
Lawyers for the defendants - who hid their faces behind magazines at Thursday's trial - said police had no proof of their clients' involvement in the raid.
The coin, more than half a meter (yard) in diameter, three cm (1.2 inches) thick and made from ultra-pure gold, is one of just six produced by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007 and was loaned to the museum by a private owner. German media say the men could face up to three years and 10 months jail.
Prosecutors believe that the Remmos smashed a protective case and then managed to lift the coin out of a museum window before fleeing along a rail track with their haul in a wheelbarrow.
The coin was probably damaged when the thieves dropped it twice, once on the tracks that pass the museum and cross the Spree river, and again in Monbijou park on the opposite river bank, from where they took it away in a vehicle.
The auto that police say was the getaway vehicle was later confiscated during an illegal auto race, reported Spiegel Online.
Police a year ago targeted the Remmos with the seizure of 77 properties worth a total of €9.3 million, charging that they were purchased with the proceeds of various crimes, including a 2014 bank robbery.
The head of German police union BDK, Sebastian Fiedler, said that "without doubt, clan criminality in all its facets is a prime example of completely failed integration".