Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Battle for the Mercedes $500 Million Treasure in Gold and Silver Coins


For 200 years, the silver coins settled silently into the Atlantic seabed, 3,000 feet beneath the waves. They gathered in clumps like rocks across a vast swath of ocean floor near southern Portugal, crusting over with sediment and weighing a total of 17 tonnes.

The coins were certainly of no use to the 250 sailors who carried them from Peru on what was probably the Spanish frigate Nuestra SeƱora de las Mercedes, which sank in 1804, torn apart by British cannon fire. But now, transported from their watery-yet-lucrative grave to litigious landlubbers, those 600,000 idle coins, reportedly worth up to $500 million, are . . .

Full story at: The Independent

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