JERUSALEM, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- A treasure trove of 232 ancient coins from 2,500 to 500 years ago were discovered in a thief's home in northern Israel, said a statement issued by the Israeli Antiquities Authority (IAA) on Monday.
According to the IAA, the coins were stolen from various excavation sites in northern Israel and found in a house in the town of Kafr Kanna in the Galilee region.
The coins dated from the Persian period (5th century B.C.), through the Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine periods, to the Ottoman period.
According to the IAA, "ancient coins are of special scientific importance."
The IAA noted that the suspected thief is a "repeat offender," who has previously been caught twice while digging in the ground and searching for antiques without a permit, using metal detectors.
The suspect was arrested by the Israeli police and will soon be indicted.
"Such thieves uproot the coin from the archaeological context in which it was placed in ancient times, thereby severely damaging its scientific value. These are missing parts of Israel's historical puzzle," the statement said.