Antonin DeHays, a French historian living in College Park, Maryland, has been charged with stealing dog tags from National Archives II at College Park and selling them on Ebay.
The 32 year-old DeHays was also charged with the theft of government records in federal court Tuesday, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office in Maryland in a news release.
Authorities said the dog tags of a downed Tuskegee airman were stolen and that
DeHays “donated” them to a Virginia museum in exchange to sit in a vintage Spitfire aircraft.
“The theft of our history should anger any citizen,” the Archivist of the United States David Ferriero said Tuesday in a statement, “but as a veteran I am shocked at allegations that a historian would show such disregard for records and artifacts documenting those captured or killed in World War II.”
A search of DeHays’ home led to the recovery of six more dog tags and documents missing from the National Archives. Facing up to 10 years in prison, DeHays admitted he stole the items for “personal financial gain,” according to a Washington Post article dated 14 June 2017.