Surprising find!

Feel free to discuss anything and everything to do with tanking here!

Postby NAB » Sat Jul 31, 2021 11:06 pm

I bet a lot of people here have things tucked away but this surely beats the lot!

https://www.warhistoryonline.com/instan ... ement.html

I want to know how big this basement was!

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Postby jhamm » Sun Aug 01, 2021 6:18 am

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Postby EAO » Sun Aug 01, 2021 11:25 pm

Hey all,

I've been watching this story with much interest since I first heard about it back in 2017 or so. It's a shame he probably won't get it back. I can understand how it makes some people nervous, but really it seems a bit overblown. He should be commended for taking such great care of such a historical item. Truly seems he didn't mean any harm with it.

Cheers,
Eric.
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Postby jhamm » Mon Aug 02, 2021 7:51 am

Hi Eric,
the Heikendorfer Panther was build later 1945 at the Panther factory M.N.H under the direction of the British Army REME.
It´s a Panther without any war history....
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Postby Raminator » Mon Aug 02, 2021 9:00 am

EAO wrote:I've been watching this story with much interest since I first heard about it back in 2017 or so. It's a shame he probably won't get it back. I can understand how it makes some people nervous, but really it seems a bit overblown. He should be commended for taking such great care of such a historical item. Truly seems he didn't mean any harm with it.

The issue is more with the Nazi sculptures, stolen artwork, and non-demilitarised small arms with ammunition in his collection. It's not like the German authorities have decided to bully a helpless pensioner, some eccentric old man with a tank in his garage. From the information available online, he's well-connected, well-financed and really should have known better about what he was doing.
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Postby NAB » Mon Aug 02, 2021 10:20 am

Don't forget the anti aircraft gun!


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Postby jhamm » Mon Aug 02, 2021 3:13 pm

Nazi sculptures, stolen artwork are not part of the charge.
The Panther and the 8,8cm flak have been classified as non-dangerous by the judge.
In his eyes, they are museum pieces that do not fall under the German War Weapons Control Act.
A mortar, a torpedo and several small arms with ammunition were also confiscated.
The mortar is not demilitarised, a torpedo is generally not allowed to be owned as a private person in Germany and most of the handguns were not registered.
Mr. Flick is a rich old man, but he is not related to the well-known industrial Flick family.
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Postby EAO » Tue Aug 03, 2021 1:13 am

Hi guys,

Over the years I have read so many differing reports that it is hard to know what this Gentleman has (or had). I kept hearing that the Panther was a 1943 model. Perhaps, 1943 parts assembled post war by the French? Very interesting to learn that it has no battle pedigree, but still must be a very rare beast.

I had heard that no looted artwork or other valuables were found. I totally support the return of any items taken from Holocaust victims or from occupied territories. You are quite correct that given his background he should of known he was taking a chance with owning anything not allowed by law.

DEWATs (Deactivated War Trophies) are a tricky area with laws being changed all the time, seemingly for no reason. Here in the States we cannot import a Canadian DEWAT as they don't meet all the U.S. requirements (I don't know about the other way around though). I have two German friends who are both serious TR collectors with massive collections. I met them through a friend of mine who is a very well respected U.S. dealer of militaria. The two (who will remain unnamed) both have a Von in there last names. They are very well off and well connected, coming from a long line of military families. Both have purchased firearms here in the States that were not deactivated. They then had them worked on to make them legal to import and own in Germany (kind of a shame as they were very rare). The following red tape and inspections took nearly a year before they were cleared, and one had to be further modified. I asked them how they were allowed to have these collections given the delicate state surrounding these things in Germany. They said that as long as it is privately displayed and not generally viewable by the public things were allowed. Of course this was about 15 years ago, so who knows what the standard is now. Given their status perhaps they were treated a little "easier" than the common citizen?

I have a friend who is a docent at the late Paul Allen's Flying Heritage and Combat Armor Museum in Everett, just North of Seattle where we once lived. I was treated to an after hours, behind the scenes tour of the museum and workshops. Unfortunately, this was before he acquired his collection of armor and it was strictly an aircraft museum (except for the Kettenkrad). So no, I still haven't stood next to a real German Panzer! :lolno: I can't fully recall which plane it was (either the Me 109, or his Fw 190) that was caught up in customs for over a year, sitting in the Port of L.A. Since it still had a working cannon, it was still legally considered a "weapon of mass destruction". He finally got it cleared but I'm not sure anymore what he had to do to make it legal. If Mr. Allen has to put up with the law's, I guess no one is really exempt!

It'll be very interesting to see the final outcome of this long running tale, and to maybe clear up some of the confusion too! Keeping anything a secret nowadays is next to impossible given the state of society. My Grandfather had a saying he was very fond of: "Admit nothing, deny everything, make counter accusations"! :wtf: I prefer "3 can keep a secret, if two are dead"! :think: Just kidding,,, really!

Very, very interesting situation.
Cheers,
Eric.
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Postby jhamm » Tue Aug 03, 2021 8:02 am

Hello Eric,
the "history" of the Panther is very well known.
It is definitely one of the Panthers which were assembled in Hannover after the end of the war under British supervision from remaining stocks at M.N.H. in Hannover.
Several Panthers and Jagdtpanthers were assembled and shipped to England for testing and trials.
Afterwards, some Panthers were used as hard targets on shooting ranges.
The Heikendorf Panther Wreck was found in a scrap yard in England in the 1970s and brought to Germany.
Here are some pictures:

Bild5.jpg
Bild5.jpg (65.84 KiB) Viewed 293 times


4dmgra8.jpg
4dmgra8.jpg (66.66 KiB) Viewed 293 times


The German weapons laws were tightened again in September 2020.
A demilitarised weapon requires massive processing.
The cartridge chamber must be welded
The barrel must be provided with 6 cross bores of the same calibre.
The breech must be bevelled at an angle of 45°.
The magazine must be firmly attached to the weapon.
A demilitarised weapon must now also be registered!!!!

Here in Germany we have the strictest laws regarding weapons of war.
The current laws in Germany make it almost impossible for a private person to own a tank.
The requirements are so enormous that one loses the fun of it. You are not allowed to show or move the tank.
That's why half of the Munster tank museum is owned by the German army.
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Postby HERMAN BIX » Tue Aug 03, 2021 10:37 am

Folks, before we all get bogged down in the pro's & cons of the principles surrounding this relic AFV's history or fate, lets remember it is the subject of a sovereign nations laws, and anything we say or think here is pure fantasy & cannot be compared to any other nations laws or expectations in this context.

Either way this story ends, the main thing is that the tank is preserved for posterity, and the fate or conduct of its custodian shall be judged by those mandated to do so under the laws they obey.................
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Postby jhamm » Tue Aug 03, 2021 12:07 pm

What i write is reality, nothing is fantasy...
I live 200 km from Heikendorf and get a lot of information about the regional news.
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Postby jhamm » Tue Aug 03, 2021 5:15 pm

It´s over!

The Regional Court of Kiel today (3. 8.21) sentenced the 84-year-old to 14 months imprisonment on probation for unlawful possession of weapons, ammunition and explosives.
In addition, he must pay 250,000 € and sell the "Panther" and the 8.8 Flak to a museum or collector within two years.
The convicted man confessed to the charges.
A museum in Seattle (USA) is obviously interested in the tank, the anti-aircraft gun a collector from North Rhine-Westphalia.
The fine of € 250,000 will be "distributed" as follows:
Schleswig Holzstein state treasury 50,000 and 70,000 each to an SOS children's village and a Kiel hospice and 60,000 to a Kiel animal shelter.
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Postby EAO » Tue Aug 03, 2021 7:57 pm

Jhamm,

Thanks for the update! I guess that settles that! Also thanks for the pics of the Panther before restoration. I had no idea it was so beat up, it looked like new when being removed from the garage. :thumbup:

Hello Herman,

No disrespect meant to any country or it's citizen's. Just discussing what to me is an unbelievable and fantastic story! It' s like saying a neighbor of mine has a U boat in his lagoon! You are right, laws are laws that have to be followed. It probably wouldn't be a very nice World to live in without them! :wave:

Cheers,
Eric.

P.S. It also looks like the fines are going to be going to some fine charities and hopefully will do some good. :clap:
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Postby jarndice » Tue Aug 03, 2021 8:36 pm

HERMAN BIX wrote:Folks, before we all get bogged down in the pro's & cons of the principles surrounding this relic AFV's history or fate, lets remember it is the subject of a sovereign nations laws, and anything we say or think here is pure fantasy & cannot be compared to any other nations laws or expectations in this context.

Either way this story ends, the main thing is that the tank is preserved for posterity, and the fate or conduct of its custodian shall be judged by those mandated to do so under the laws they obey.................

The history of "War" Booty is a long and not always honourable one,
Immediately after the second Iraq war I had cause to visit RAF Brize Norton,
As I was driving across the dispersal area I pointed out to my escort the imposing Green and Gold Boeing 747 in the livery of the lately deposed Iraqi Government that was parked there,
The gentleman told me it was Saddam Hussain's own transport and was awaiting disposal,
There was never any mention in the press about it even though for the week or so that it was at Brize Norton it could be clearly seen from the adjacent A40 :lolno:
After the Falklands campaign a number of Huey's in Argentinian markings were removed to the UK and served a particular British Army Regiment in the West of England until the home grown product became available,
I think one of them can now be seen at the RAF Cosford Aircraft Museum.
Again no mention in the press but it was common knowledge to those with a few contacts.
A few Argentinian Air Force Pucara Ground Attack aircraft were airlifted/Shipped to the UK although most of the Pucaras that had been in the Falklands remained there having been destroyed by that same regiment a little earlier :lolno:
And woe betide any Argentinian officer captured in the Falklands hoping to retain his ACP :thumbdown:
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Postby EAO » Wed Aug 04, 2021 3:24 am

Jarndice,

You are correct again Sir. Sounds like Argentine ACP's were as popular as Luger's in WW2. My Uncle Raywald at one time had 21 Luger's clunking around in his rucksack. He traded most of them for cigarettes, a bottle of wine, eggs, etc., whatever he wanted or needed at the time. He returned to the State's with 5 of these and promptly had them chrome plated! The chrome plating was expertly done and nice to look at, but very thick which obviously removed all markings and proof's thereby ruining their collector's value. He gave one to my Father who had it until I was about 10 years old and then sold it for what seemed like a good amount of money back then. Never occurred to him that one day I'd be interested in these things! :wtf: As Dave Mustaine of MegaDeth once said "hindsight is twenty twenty, broken back is still a bit fuzzy"! :crazy:

Truly hope that this topic didn't step on any toes. I just found the whole story so unreal...and fascinating.

Regards,
Eric.
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Postby NAB » Wed Aug 04, 2021 8:46 am

jhamm wrote:It´s over!

The Regional Court of Kiel today (3. 8.21) sentenced the 84-year-old to 14 months imprisonment on probation for unlawful possession of weapons, ammunition and explosives.
In addition, he must pay 250,000 € and sell the "Panther" and the 8.8 Flak to a museum or collector within two years.
The convicted man confessed to the charges.
A museum in Seattle (USA) is obviously interested in the tank, the anti-aircraft gun a collector from North Rhine-Westphalia.
The fine of € 250,000 will be "distributed" as follows:
Schleswig Holzstein state treasury 50,000 and 70,000 each to an SOS children's village and a Kiel hospice and 60,000 to a Kiel animal shelter.
He will get a lot more than 250k euros for his items so will be in big profit! Plus that sentence I assume will be suspended

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Postby jhamm » Wed Aug 04, 2021 9:27 am

Do you really think it's a profit
when you lose or have to sell a collection you've built up over a long time?
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Postby NAB » Wed Aug 04, 2021 9:28 am

Yes because at least he's able to sell them rather than have them confiscated and then have to find 250k from somewhere else

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Postby jhamm » Wed Aug 04, 2021 10:13 am

Believe me, the gentleman has so much money that he can pay the 250,000 € even without selling the Panther...
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Postby FredtheFrench » Sun Aug 08, 2021 11:31 am

So sad. Sorry for this man and his Panther ( I don't speak about the non-demilitarized rifles and ammunitions...)

This panther wasn't a secret and it was the restoration of a life. Now, the owner has the obligation to sale his own tank. Where is the german democraty for this man?
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