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Treasure case adds arrest of N.H. man

NEWTON, N.H. -- The fourth man charged in an alleged buried treasure scam has been arrested, police said yesterday.

Matt Ingham, 23, of Newton, was arrested at his house Saturday as a fugitive from justice. He is scheduled to be arraigned in New Hampshire today, said Lieutenant Thomas Fram of the Methuen (Mass.) Police Department.

Investigators say Ingham was part of a group of men accused of stealing a cache of old currency while doing a roofing job in Newbury, Mass.

Barry Billcliff, 27, of Manchester, and Timothy Crebase, 24, of Methuen, pleaded not guilty Friday after being arrested on charges of receiving stolen property, conspiracy, and accessory after the fact.

Kevin Kozak, 27, of Methuen, surrendered Friday night. He also was to be arraigned today.

Investigators said Crebase confessed under questioning. Crebase said he, Billcliff, and Ingham -- all roofers -- found the money stuffed in rusting tin cans in the gutter of a barn they were hired to repair, and persuaded Kozak to go along with their story, authorities said. In the alleged confession, Crebase said Ingham planned to use proceeds to fund his rock band.

Ingham's mother disputes her son's involvement. Janet Ingham says her son wasn't even with Crebase and Billcliff the day police say they found the antique money.

She told WMUR-TV, ''Tim threw him a $2 bill and said here's a souvenir. He didn't know where it came from."

Billcliff and Crebase made national headlines by asserting they dug up buried treasure worth as much as $125,000 in the yard of a house Crebase rented from Kozak. Their lawyers said last week that Billcliff and Crebase were sticking to their story.

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