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No, Ukrainians Aren't Selling Captured Russian Tanks on eBay

But if Ukrainians do capture a tank, they don't have to declare its value to the government.

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This listing on eBay promised a Russian tank -- if the buyer could pick it up in Ukraine. But as you flip through the photos, the seller backs down and admits to selling a toy. Now the listing is gone.
Screenshot by Gael Fashingbauer Cooper/CNET

This story is part of War in Ukraine, CNET's coverage of events there and of the wider effects on the world.

Russia's invasion of Ukraine has prompted countless news stories, memes and videos. But not every report is true. One image circulating on social media showed what was supposedly an eBay listing selling a Russian tank captured in Ukraine, priced at $400,000 (roughly £299,740, AU$546,000). Now urban-legends site Snopes has dug into the story behind the listing and revealed that the tank photo has been on the web for more than a decade, and isn't from any current eBay listing.

"While this photograph does appear to show a Russian T-72 tank, this picture has been online since at least 2010," Snopes reports, linking to the same tank photo as it appeared in a 2010 post on website DefenceTalk.com.

That doesn't mean people aren't creating joke listings on eBay purportedly selling Russian tanks. A spokesperson for eBay didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. But when I checked on Thursday, at least one listing, now taken down, advertised a Russian tank for sale with the instructions that the buyer must pick it up in Ukraine. Interested buyers would have to flip through the item's multiple photos to see the seller admit he or she was selling a toy tank. After I emailed eBay about the listing, it was taken down, and the URL now resolves to an error page.

Ukrainians have indeed destroyed some Russian tanks, as Reuters reports, and the country also has taken possession of Russian tanks used in the attempted invasion.

Two videos posted by British member of parliament Johnny Mercer show tractors towing away Russian tanks. Snopes cites one of the videos and notes that the fact-checking site couldn't confirm the clip's origin.

But though actual captured Russian tanks aren't being sold on eBay, it appears those Ukrainians who do capture a tank don't have to declare its value to their own government.

"Have you captured a Russian tank or armored personnel carrier and are worried about how to declare it?" reads a statement from Ukraine's National Agency for the Protection against Corruption, as translated by Kyiv-based news agency Interfax Ukraine. "Keep calm and continue to defend the Motherland! There is no need to declare the captured Russian tanks and other equipment."

Snopes reports that the statement goes on to say, "Thanks to the courage and victory of the defenders of the Ukrainian state, enemy military equipment usually comes to you already destroyed and disabled, which makes it impossible to evaluate it in accordance with the law ... Therefore, it is also impossible to find out how much such property costs."

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