Context : Pamphillus has to bring two vases (scyphos) to the praetor Verres who is advised by two corrupted connoisseurs with which Pamphillus has negotiated a sum of money in exchange for Pamphillus to keep his vases.
Here is the excerpt :
Vocat interea praetor ; poscit scyphos. Tum illos coepisse praetori dicere putasse se, id quod audissent, alicujus preti scyphos esse Pamphili ; luteum negotium esse, non dignum quod in suo argento Verres haberet. Ait ille idem sibi videri. Ita Pamphilus scyphos optimos aufert…
My problem is with the sentence in bold and mainly about the word illos. Does it refer to the "Scyphos" or to the "advisors".
I would translate by : "Then they have started (coepisse) to say (dicere) to the praetor that they (se) had thought (puta(vi)sse), as they have heard, that the Pamphillus's vases were somewhat worthy."
But "illos" is not translated. It can be linked to scyphos but it is far away from it. It should not be linked to the connoisseurs as they are the subject of the sentence so, "se" would be used instead of "illos".
Also I am not sure if coepisse is linked to dicere (they have sarted to say) or with putasse (they say they had started to think)