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Troopers Clarify Seizures In Pawn Shop Raids

STOWE PA – Unless they looked suspiciously like they just came off a retailer’s shelf, items individuals may have pawned in Capitol Cash Exchange stores at 1415 W. High St., Stowe, or in Reading, should still be there waiting for their owners whenever the stores are open, the Pennsylvania State Police said Thursday (Jan. 5, 2017) on its Facebook page.

Since highly publicized Wednesday (Jan. 4) raids at the two pawn shops, after they searched for and confiscated allegedly stolen goods there, troopers apparently have been plagued by calls from owners of everything from large-screen TVs to lucky horseshoes who earlier left them and other valuables as collateral for loans received. Could they get those cherished goods back?, callers asked.

The agency officially replied with what it labeled as a “clarification” regarding the items its law enforcers took from the stores.

“Hundreds of items were seized,” it acknowledged. But troopers “did not seize any items that are considered ‘pawned’ or ‘on loan,’ including jewelry and used items,” its statement said. The agency “does not have any of these items; they were not part of the investigation,” it added.

Their search specifically focused on packaged, unopened, never-used goods, a state police public information officer earlier told the news media.

A pawn loan is one secured by what individuals exchange for cash borrowed, the Capitol Cash Exchange website explains. “A pawn is a collateral loan. Unlike a bank, where loans are secured by credit, a pawn is a loan secured by items, such as jewelry,” it says. “Throughout the loan the pawned item is kept safe, and when the duration of the loan is up, the client may either pay just the 3% interest to extend the loan, or pay the interest AND principal to get their item back.”

“Consumers with such items at these businesses should contact Capitol Cash Exchange,” the state police statement concluded.

That could be difficult for awhile yet. At last report the shops’ owner and operator, Nicholas Blanck, had been arrested and confined to Berks County Jail after failing to post bail valued at $100,000. He’s charged with “corrupt organization, knowledge that property is proceeds of illegal act, organized retail theft, receiving stolen property, and conspiracy,” according to the state.

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