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article image$500-million Sunken Treasure Found Off Coast of Florida

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By malan     May 19, 2007 in World
Odyssey Marine Exploration finds more than 17 tons of silver and gold coins worth an estimated $500-million in what treasure hunters are calling the richest shipwreck treasure ever found
Tamba based Odyssey Marine Exploration is enjoying what is being called the richest shipwreck treasure ever found. Their discovery of more than 500,000 silver and hundreds of gold coins from a wreck site in the Atlantic Ocean is a modern day treasure hunters dream come true.
"For this colonial era, I think the find is unprecedented," said Nick Bruyer, a rare coin expert who examined some of the coins. "I don't know anything equal or comparable to it."
Odyssey has not disclosed the location of the ship for fear of looters and modern day pirates that would most likely descend on the location in an attempt to take it. Countries may also have an interest in the find and attempt to lay claim to it as well. The entire operation is being heavily protected and covered in secrecy.
A video has been released that shows the 17 tons of treasure being carted off of a jet and is the only piece of media related to the event that has been released yet.
Experts are saying the coins could implicate exactly what ship they found. Early indications suggest the shipwreck is the remains of a 17th century merchant ship but it is hard to tell due to the fact that the site is in a shipping lane where many colonial-era vessels sank.
Odyssey were awarded title by a federal judge in Tampa and now own the ship and it's contents. Although surrounding countries may try to claim the ships as theirs courts say that because the wreckage was found outside any countries territorial borders it cannot be taken from Odyssey.
The site is still being explored as Odyssey treasure hunters believe there may be even more valuable materials on or around the ship.
The find comes at a good time as investors have been suffering from years of setbacks until the 2003 discovery of the SS Republic and now this giant find. Odyssey's stock prices are up 81%.
"The outside world now understands that what we do is a real business and is repeatable and not just a lucky, one-shot deal," said Stemm. "I don't know anybody else who has hit more than one economically significant shipwreck."
A great find by Odyssey. View video of the loot being loaded off a jet here. It will be interesting to see what else is pulled out of this site. Hats off to the Odyssey group for sticking with it, isn't this what we all dreamed about when we were kids?
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