He missed a better bet, I worked in a cleanroom where we recycled our etched gold. We used a iodine etchant for our lithography process, captured the effluent in a epoxy filter (the filtered water went down the city water system). When the filter was full I took it down to our materials lab, where it was separated out. Imagine a large beaker one half full of gold dust. Overall a much cleaner process.
I wish I could remember the companies involved but we used to work with a used equipment dealer who was called in to make an offer on an obsolete mainframe computer system, something massive from the 60's. He hemed and sighed and said "guys, really, it's obsolete. I'd have to charge you $5,000 just to haul it away as junk." Not being the first guy to say so they cut the PO and he showed up with men and trucks and hauled it all back to his shop where he disassembled everything and removed beautiful gold plated wire wrap sockets, gold plated connectors, gold plated DIP ICs, gold plated PCBs... all the electronics inside were gold plated!
He made an extra $20,000 from the gold re-processor.