Colombian military shares photos of shipwreck carrying billions in misplaced treasure, together with gold, silver and emeralds


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The Colombian military has launched a video displaying gold cash and different helpful objects across the shipwreck of the San Jose galleon, believed to be the resting place of billions of {dollars} in treasure.

Royal Navy vessels sank the Spanish flagship in 1708 in the course of the Struggle of the Spanish Succession, however its resting place – close to the port of Cartagena on Colombia’s coast with the Caribbean – had been a thriller for greater than three centuries earlier than the Colombian navy formally introduced its discovery in 2015.

Consultants speculate that the ship was loaded with at the very least 200 tons of treasure, together with tens of millions of high-purity gold doubloon cash, in addition to many silver cash and emeralds that the Spanish empire had plundered from South America, price as much as $17bn (£13.5bn) right now.

The video reveals an unlimited bounty aboard the vessel even past the gold cash and ingots, together with historical cannons in addition to intact Chinese language porcelain, pottery and cannons.

Colombian authorities and army archaeologists are finding out the inscriptions on this materials to find out the place it originated from.

President Ivan Duque praised his nation’s navy for capturing “pictures with a degree of precision that is by no means been seen earlier than” and has asserted that the wreck and its contents would stay in Colombia quite than be offered as a part of the salvage operation.

The salvage rights have been topic to many years of litigation and are contested by an expert salvage firm that claims to have first uncovered the wreck in 1981, in addition to Colombia, Spain and the Qhara Qhara nation of indigenous Bolivians who declare the Spanish extracted the wealth from its folks.

The photographs shared by the Colombian military have been captured with a remotely operated submersible car that dived to a depth of just about a kilometre. Its particular location is taken into account a state secret.

US-based salvage firm Sea Search Armada – owned by buyers together with the late John Ehrlichman, the White Home adviser beneath President Nixon convicted for his position within the Watergate scandal – claimed to have first discovered the wreckage within the early Nineteen Eighties.

It is not clear whether or not the placement the corporate recognized is identical as that uncovered by the Colombian navy.

A number of authorized battles over how a lot the corporate could be due if it carried out the salvage operations have now been accomplished, leaving Sea Search Armada with no additional authorized recourse.

The Colombian navy’s submersible car additionally discovered two close by shipwrecks, considered one of a colonial boat and one other of a schooner which is assumed up to now again to Colombia’s conflict for independence from Spain in 1819.

“We now have two different discoveries in the identical space, that present different choices for archaeological exploration. So the work is simply starting,” mentioned navy commander Admiral Gabriel Perez, in line with Reuters.

“The thought is to get better it and to have sustainable financing mechanisms for future extractions,” added President Duque. “On this manner we shield the treasure, the patrimony of the San Jose galleon.”

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