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Sunken Treasure Worth $500 Million Found Off England

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the treasure-in-the-depths dept.

Education 157

An anonymous reader writes "In a modern day (and underwater) version of Indiana Jones, the AP is reporting that Odyssey Marine Exploration has recovered an estimated $500 Million in colonial coins from a 400 year old shipwreck in the Atlantic. The exact location of the wreck is still undisclosed. Odyssey is a for-profit, publicly traded company. 'In seeking exclusive rights to that site, an Odyssey attorney told a federal judge last fall that the company likely had found the remains of a 17th-century merchant vessel that sank with valuable cargo aboard, about 40 miles off the southwestern tip of England. A judge granted those rights Wednesday. In keeping with the secretive nature of the project dubbed ''Black Swan,'' Odyssey also is not discussing details of the coins, such as their type, denomination or country of origin. Bruyer said he observed a wide variety of coins that probably were never circulated. He said the currency was in much better condition than artifacts yielded by most shipwrecks of a similar age. The coins -- mostly silver pieces -- could fetch several hundred to several thousand dollars each, with some possibly commanding much more, he said.'"

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Arrrr (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189043)

Yarrrr matey, thar be treasure..

Re:Arrrr (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189791)

Arrr, ye scurvy cove, that b'ain't no moon... it's a b'yr'lady space-station!

As the sunken vessel lies in international waters (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189049)

what stops courts in other countries from giving other companies the right to also go salvaging for whatever is to be found there?

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (1)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189071)

I believe its being handled by not giving away the gps coordinates in a very large ocean until all the treasure has been acquired.

You'd be looking for a needle in several large haystacks to find the actual divers that are harvesting it.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (2, Funny)

blackicye (760472) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189113)

What's to stop someone from just waiting until they leave port then following the ship/boat?

Wonder how they stop that one suspicious cabin cruiser that keeps tailing them from port to salvage site.
Maybe some kind of court order or injunction..what if another takes its place..

I'd imagine the easiest way would be to lure these stalkers into international waters then sink them with the cannons.

Yaaarrrr!

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (4, Insightful)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189173)

Yeah you could follow them, but there are hundreds if not thousands of these modern day pirate types that go looking for lost treasures of pirates of old. So you'd still be taking a huge chance.

I'm willing to bet that anyone who spends enough money on gear and time to go tracking down treasures worth that much and finally finds one isn't about to share it with some noob that follows them around. Pirates and those that seek their lost treasure probably aren't the sharing type. Think pillage etc...

As far as where the treasure ends up in international seas, I'm sure these guys are fast at what they do and making a case against them will be hard. The crime scene is under several hundred feet of water. Probably most countries have more pressing issues to deal with when it comes to their naval fleets. Picking on pirates just doesn't seem to be worth the trouble. Its not like they're running drugs.

just mho though. ask my sister she's the one with the law degree.

Not that I have anything against pirates. ~wink~ I'm just more of a ninja type lady!

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (1)

crc32 (133399) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189991)

They're not pirates, they're salvagers.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (2, Interesting)

hcpxvi (773888) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189125)

Goodness knows. If BBC Radio is to be believed, the nearest country seems to be the UK. And the ship that sank was English (dating back to before the existance of the UK). But the salvage company are American. And the treasure was nicked by the English from the Spanish. Who presumaby nicked the original Ag/Au from the native South Americans before making it into coins. So why it is a federal Judge who gets to decide who can salvage the stuff, I don't know. Because it is a US company, I suppose.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (3, Informative)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189427)

This is all guesswork on my part from bits and pieces I've picked up, but at 40 miles from the UK, the UK government has no jurisdiction. The ship sank hundreds of years ago, so has no actual owners (and if I understand it, a ship abandoned or sunk in international waters has no owners anyway). I think international treaties essentially have a "finders keepers" rule for wrecks, but national law may still require companies to go through some legal processes to prove that they were the first people there and they do actually have salvage rights.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (5, Informative)

mce (509) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189937)

a ship abandoned or sunk in international waters has no owners anyway

Unless it is a war grave. In that case, the ship is forever owned by the government of the country that it sailed for, or its internationally recognised sucessor, no matter whose waters the wreck is located in. HMS Hood is property of the UK government, despite her position in international waters. KM Bismarck is property of the German government (I don't know which Germany would have been considered owner between 1945 and 1990, but it doesn't matter: either one would have been "done the trick").

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189453)

As has been said 90 times in other posts, the Federal judge was not giving them permission to take the gold. They don't need to ask permission to take shit out of international waters. The Judge was involved only to give them the official guarantee that the salvage operation was legitimate. Or basically just telling everyone who might ask "Yes, this was all done above the table".

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19190029)

Why would it be English? It could very well be Dutch.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (1, Interesting)

Instine (963303) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189229)

Exactly. What has a 'federal judge' got to do with something off the coast of England?

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (1)

Nutria (679911) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189367)

Exactly. What has a 'federal judge' got to do with something off the coast of England?

There are treaties that enumerate all this. Depending on what the treaties say, Odyssey Marine Exploration might have to turn over a chunk of the profits to England.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189909)

America lies off the coast of England.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (1, Flamebait)

tumbleweedsi (904869) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189275)

Well we all saw in Iraq what happened to people who ignored America's version of 'International' Law.

Re:As the sunken vessel lies in international wate (4, Informative)

jcr (53032) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189459)

Admiralty law, established by treaties that just about every country with a coastline are parties to.

-jcr

someone call in the ninjas (1)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189055)

Can't let pirate treasure get away!

argh!

*Federal* judge? (1, Insightful)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189601)

I'm curious to know how a US judge would have any jurisdiction over a wreck 40 miles off the English coast?

Re:*Federal* judge? (1)

arivanov (12034) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189957)

None.

And while it is an interesting wreck it is not the "mother of all wrecks" anyway.

I am waiting for the day when someone will find the damn place somewhere off Kadis, where the Spaniards dumped all those thousands of tons of Platinum from the Aztec and Inca empires so that it "does not devalue the value of silver in the old world".

Now that one will turn the world upside down (though it is likely to be 1km+ depth so getting our grubby hands on it will be rather difficult).

Solution to global warming! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189067)

Phase 1. Treasure
Phase 2. ???
Phase 3. Stop Global Warming

Only now does it become obvious that what we needed were more pirates.

Re:Solution to global warming! (1)

Miseph (979059) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190083)

Parent is not a troll, it's a joke. It's an FSM reference (and a better one than most, I might add), for all those who might not get it.

The exact location of the wreck still undisclosed (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189079)

Inexpensive maps available for just $99

Re:The exact location of the wreck still undisclos (3, Funny)

l3mr (1070918) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189397)

This is no map. It looks like...dancing lessons.

Registration required... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189081)

Not only his journalism sucks... also the URL's in his articles suck...

I demand that Zonk is kicked off the board of editors and his account is banned.

Everybody did already think or even write here that Zonk is not needed.

Re:Registration required... (-1, Offtopic)

janrinok (846318) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189103)

Firstly, if you feel so strongly, why post as AC? Secondly, the URL works correctly and points to the appropriate information. What exactly is your complaint with it? Thirdly, you might wish to have Zonk removed from the 'board of editors' but what do you hope to gain by 'banning his account'? Anyone can read /., and even AC's have the opportunity to post. Preventing AC's from posting would lead to a much more significant improvement in the quality of posts, or at least that is my opinion.

Disregard this post - the parent has been removed (0, Redundant)

janrinok (846318) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189189)

This post is now superfluous - the parent to which it referred has been deleted. I wonder why they left this one floating in nowhere-land?

Re:Disregard this post - the parent has been remov (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189259)

Posts don't get removed from Slashdot. Check your comment threshold.

Re:Registration required... (0, Troll)

bstempi (844043) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189183)

Everybody did already think or even write here that Zonk is not needed.

English...do you speak it, mothafucka?

Re:Registration required... (0, Offtopic)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189215)

I hope this is in jest. Zonk is a stand up guy. Don't grief him in the middle of a discussion about an article he posted. Take it up with the proper channels. Have some civility and common sense please. Unless this was a friendly dig at a buddy, leave the angry sentiments to email instead of a public forum. Its just not approprate.

Even pirates and ninjas know better how to handle personality disputes, in a discrete manner.

Zonk, I got your back, whether you're a pirate guy or a ninja dude. Personal attacks in public forums are on the level of 3rd graders and the current presidental administration. ~ducks~

Re:Registration required... (1)

bstempi (844043) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189277)

You had better hope that Bush doesn't user the inter-pipes

Re:Registration required... (1)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189551)

"People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people." ~V, V For Vendetta (2005)

I still believe in my country's Bill of Rights.

Re:Registration required... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189667)

Really? I can't decide if that's very brave or very stupid. Perhaps a bit of both.

Re:Registration required... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189797)

Are you a real girl? Can I sniff your pussy please?

Re:Registration required... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189353)

With those kind of crowd pleasing ass-licking skills, you'd be popular in prison.

Re:Registration required... (0, Offtopic)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189449)

Hey, you're angry at someone else, but I don't ass-lick. I give respect where its earned. If you don't like Zonk fine. But don't call me a kiss-up just because I stand up for people I respect. When I issue a compliment or stand up for someone its genuine. You're basing your assement of *my* character on one post. Thats shallow. And this is OT. So lets agree to disagree about your feelings toward him and get back to pirate treasure.

why coins? (1)

anonymous_but_brave (1075911) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189085)

In my attempts to consider the relation between pirate's treasure and technology news, I could only come up with a few ideas, none of which were addressed in the summary or TFA: 1. The coins had an unusually high electrical conductivity / specific weight ratio 2. They were produced by (at-the-time) high tech currency manufacturing technology or, 3. It's just because Pirates are popular lately.....

Re:why coins? (1)

bstempi (844043) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189167)

In my attempts to consider the relation between pirate's treasure and technology news, I could only come up with a few ideas, none of which were addressed in the summary

It was never stated because it's obvious...this is teh l00t that will be used to buy Sealand [slashdot.org] . Just in time [slashdot.org] , too!

Re:why coins? (2, Insightful)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189495)

Yeah I wondered why so many coins would be worth so much because it'd drive down collectibility by flooding the market. I'm with #1, the metal must have some value. I'm sure some coins will be purchased by collectors. The rest will end up melted down for their materials value? Of course #3 could easily be part of it. Never underestimate the marketing ability of a blockbuster film and greedy corporations.

Why are the ninjas taking so long? Is there a run on hamburgers this morning?

Re:why coins? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189871)

Slashdot isn't technology news - it's "news for nerds".

Any proper nerd loves pirates. Nerds loved pirates before they came back into style and by gum we'll love them long after they go out.

Sunken treasure? That's "stuff that matters"!

This just proves... (5, Funny)

Romwell (873455) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189089)

...that pirates are better than ninjas. You never get to read about ninja treasure found underwater !

Re:This just proves... (5, Insightful)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189117)

Romwell (873455) [slashdot.org] posted:
...that pirates are better than ninjas. You never get to read about ninja treasure found underwater !

You never read about it, because no one ever catches ninjas! ~ninja grin~

Re:This just proves... (-1, Redundant)

Romwell (873455) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189331)

Nay, that's because Pirates only go after Pirates, without even bothering thmeselves with ninjas :P (mod me -1 redundant =) )

Re:This just proves... (1)

RiskyChris (999242) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189195)

Ninjas aren't stupid enough to get their ships sunk.

Re:This just proves... (1)

jcr (53032) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189467)

Ninjas are too busy to waste time on ships.

-jcr

Re:This just proves... (1)

SeaFox (739806) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189401)

...that pirates are better than ninjas. You never get to read about ninja treasure found underwater !


Because the ninjas swoop in and assassinate the writer before he can finish the story. DUH.

Re:This just proves... (1)

clickclickdrone (964164) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189799)

>...that pirates are better than ninjas. You never get to read about ninja treasure found underwater !
That's because Ninja's are far better at hiding their underwater treasure troves.

Federal Judge (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189119)

If the wreck was 40 miles off the English coast, it should in English, or possibly French, territorial waters. So why ask a US judge?

Re:Federal Judge (5, Informative)

wakaranai (87059) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189281)

In general, it seems that UK and French territorial waters extend to twelve nautical miles (13.8 miles or 22.2 km) off their coasts.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Territorial_Waters [wikipedia.org]

Re:Federal Judge (1)

jez9999 (618189) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189303)

And the rest of the ocean counts as US territorial waters, right? ;-)

Re:Federal Judge (1)

packeteer (566398) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189493)

Pretty much the rest of the oceans and all the land...

Re:Federal Judge (1)

gkhan1 (886823) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189633)

I think the general principle is that the country where the vessel is registered is responsible for that vessel if you are in international waters. So, for instance, if you commit a murder in the middle of the Atlantic on a ship registered to France, the French police investigates it and locks up the offenders. I imagine the same thing is true for this kind of situation. It was an American boat that found it, which means that the American government can decide whether it's "historically significant" and should be put in a museum, or something.

Re:Federal Judge (1)

donscarletti (569232) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189501)

I'm, pretty sure a nation has control of salvage within their Exclusive Economic Zone [wikipedia.org] which extend 200 nautical miles out to sea.

Re:Federal Judge (1)

dparnass (1004755) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189787)

But doesn't an economic zone extend to almost 200 miles. Or does that only apply to fishing and exploration for oil and natural gas.

Re:Federal Judge (4, Informative)

belmolis (702863) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189317)

The wreck appears to be in international waters. Therefore, the company may obtain an order for admiralty arrest from a competent court of any nation. In the general case, admiralty arrest is the approximate equivalent in admiralty law of a lien on property. In a case such as this, what it amounts to is a declaration by the court that the ship has been abandoned by its original owner and that the applicant therefore has exclusive salvage rights.

Re:Federal Judge (1)

nicklott (533496) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189489)

Yes, although as an exception to that IIRC the Royal Navy (and other national Navies) lay claim to any wreck of one of it's own ships, however old it maybe and whoever's waters it may be in (not that this is a RN ship). The original owner also gets first dibs on anything from a wreck *landed* in the UK (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Receiver_of_Wreck) and, assuming the the coins are British, presumably the Crown is the original owner. Which probably explains why they chose to sail it hundreds of miles across the Atlantic rather than 40 miles to Plymouth.

I thought the Crown was more aggressive in enforcing its (perceived) rights in these matters, but google tells me this particular government is more interested in getting their dirty paws on the money (http://www.britarch.ac.uk/conserve/sussexpr.html)

Re:Federal Judge (1)

belmolis (702863) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189623)

I was only talking about jurisdiction. What law governs the claim is another matter. In general, the law has been "finder's keeper's", even for fairly recent wrecks. For example, the Andrea Doria, which sank in 1956, was salvaged by an outfit that obtained complete rights to it. Historically there have been some exceptions for government vessels, but even these did not apply if the vessel was engaged in a primarily non-governmental activity (e.g. serving as a treasure ship.) The whole business is complicated and different countries had different ideas - there was not always agreement.

In recent years the "finder's keeper's" principle has been increasingly challenged, partly by ship owners and insurance companies that want to maintain ownership and partly by archaeologists who want the opportunity to explore wrecks scientifically. In the United States, legislation was passed a while back that considerably changed the picture. This applies to freshwater and to coastal waters but does not affect the high seas.

Re:Federal Judge (3, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189531)

That's so cool. I can't wait until someone does something similar with an abandoned spacecraft.

Re:Federal Judge (1)

Tim Browse (9263) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190049)

"Mr. Blair. It seems there is nothing you can possess which I cannot take away."

I'm not getting it (3, Funny)

niceone (992278) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189141)

In a modern day (and underwater) version of Indiana Jones

I'm not quite getting it. Leaving aside the difficulties of shooting, who would stand in for the evil Nazis? I suppose they could have the Taliban in scuba gear.

Re:I'm not getting it (5, Funny)

saforrest (184929) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189365)

I'm not quite getting it. Leaving aside the difficulties of shooting, who would stand in for the evil Nazis? I suppose they could have the Taliban in scuba gear.

Well, why not the Nazis? They had U-boats after all. Maybe it could be a secret undersea Nazi base in the North Sea which survived the downfall of the Third Reich by remaining undetected, but which is located close enough to the shipwreck that its existence is jeopardized. Indiana Jones V: Indiana Jones und Das Boot!

Re:I'm not getting it (5, Funny)

niceone (992278) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189465)

You, Sir, are a genius. Have you considered a Hollywood career? Combining 2 sequels into one movie - a masterstroke.

"It belongs in a museum!" *Whack* (2, Insightful)

Albinoman (584294) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189589)

Indiana Jones seemed to be more out there to uncover history for the world, and to keep artifacts out of the hands of private owners.

Yet another reason why we need copyright reform (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189153)

This is a travesty. This centuries-old sunken treasure is of immeasurable cultural and archaeological value. That the contents of this ship are to be handed over to private corporation to be auctioned off to the highest bidder like so many pork bellies is an insult to human acheivement.

This is just another spadeful to the existing mountain of evidence of the crucial need for copyright reform in today's digital age.

Re:Yet another reason why we need copyright reform (4, Interesting)

Archon-X (264195) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189251)

I see your point. Devil's advocate:
1- Is it better that it was never found at all?
2- Can you argue that it would have never been recovered by a museum etc
3- Money is always a good motivation for people to find things.
4- Are you sure they're going to 'destroy the evidence' to feed their greed?
So far it seems they've been pretty methodical and patient to go by the book. Perhaps we'll all be pleasantly surprised.

Re:Yet another reason why we need copyright reform (1)

Nutria (679911) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189379)

I see your point. Devil's advocate:

He was being sarcastic...

Re:Yet another reason why we need copyright reform (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189855)

In his defense, I missed the last sentence the first time also.

Pieces of eight! (1)

golemwashere (265567) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189155)

ARR

ZEUS remotely operated vehicle (ROV) (4, Informative)

wakaranai (87059) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189185)

Apparently, the ZEUS ROV is used by Odyssey Marine Exploration in the search for artifacts. It weighs 7.3 tonnes (in air) and is 3.2 metres long, and it can operate down to depths of 2500 metres.

It was originally designed for the maintenance of deep-ocean fibre optic cables, and has manipulators and high-resolution video feeds that allow items to be handled with great precision

http://shipwreck.net/zeus/ [shipwreck.net]

Re:ZEUS remotely operated vehicle (ROV) (2, Insightful)

Soulshift (1044432) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189261)

...It weighs 7.3 tonnes (in air)...
I'm sure you mean that its mass is 7.3 tonnes...

Not exactly (2, Interesting)

sid0 (1062444) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189505)

"Weighs" IIRC is an acceptable substitute for measuring the mass.

What will you say, "it masses 7.3 tonnes?"

Re:ZEUS remotely operated vehicle (ROV) (1)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190155)

Yeah but where do I buy one ..... and Where are do i find ye pirate treasure hidden 'yonder? There must be some maps ..... ;)

Not Quite Indiana Jones (5, Funny)

\\ (118555) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189197)

Indiana Jones would've put that shit in a Museum, not paid dividends to his shareholders.

Re:Not Quite Indiana Jones (5, Interesting)

WannaBeGeekGirl (461758) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189385)

Too bad Indi was neither a pirate, ninja or politician...

I agree though, I was raised by two pacific Archaeologists and they're not exactly fans of pirates either. Pot hunters, big corporations that fake the land and archaeological impact data requirements are pretty much pirates of a sort. They pillage and destroy with greed their soul goal, no diplomacy and guilt of the scientific data destroyed and peoples and cultures they've offended.

Too bad my parents are pacifists, it would have been cool to see them bust out a whip at Mesa Verde, CO when they busted a tourist swiping artifacts.
~WBGG

Re:Not Quite Indiana Jones (1)

Nutria (679911) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189441)

Indiana Jones would've put that shit in a Museum, not paid dividends to his shareholders.

You need to go watch the movies again.

He was a contract adventurer, hired by the University to steal specific artifacts. Remember the opening scene of RotLA?

Re:Not Quite Indiana Jones (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190043)

They just happened to be willing to pay him for the artifacts, "no questions asked" and all that.

Re:Not Quite Indiana Jones (1)

argStyopa (232550) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190145)

No, as you recall Indiana Jones would have (given the setting) uncovered some great mystical Cthulhoid plot which, when all was said and done, would have resulted in the spectacular destruction of at least one world-significant historical site and then had all evidence locked away in a government storage facility under "TOP SECRET" classification.

I think dividends to shareholders actually sounds a lot safer to us innocent bystanders.

A Federal Judge...? (0, Troll)

glawrie (663927) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189205)

What has a federal judge got to do with property rights 40 miles off English coastline? I knew that the US had ambitions of a colonial nature, but this surely is a step too far...! Or is it that the UK has quietly become a federation while I slept?

Re:A Federal Judge...? (1)

rollx (830963) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189227)

From TFA

The site is beyond the territorial waters or legal jurisdiction of any country

Re:A Federal Judge...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189267)

I think its just a technicality to prove that the gold/silver isn't stolen( in case someone trys to claim it was) . It also makes the items worth more with proper proof that it's not fraudulent

Re:A Federal Judge...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189835)

Yeah I thought Britannia ruled the waves! I suppose the US rules the tresure undeneath them then :)
 
Seriously though I don't think the parent should be modded troll, it seems a bit too far to be classed as US territorial waters.

I Can See Issues With This (-1, Redundant)

segedunum (883035) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189243)

In seeking exclusive rights to that site, an Odyssey attorney told a federal judge last fall that the company likely had found the remains of a 17th-century merchant vessel that sank with valuable cargo aboard, about 40 miles off the southwestern tip of England.
A federal judge has no right to grant rights to anything, and I don't know why they'd be telling him/her that - whether in international waters or not. It doesn't say whether it is in international waters, by I pretty much doubt it if it's near the English Channel.

RTFA, dumbass (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189349)

You're a dumbass. Territorial waters and airspace extend 12 nautical miles from the coastline. Admirality law, which is an internationally recognized set of laws, allows anyone to get any national judge to declare property abandoned in the high seas. They, being a US company, asked a US judge to do this. 40 nm off the coast is not territorial water, the brits have no territorial control over it. It could just as legally been a Pakistani company asking a Pakistani judge. You, sir, a typical, useless, slashtard.

Re:RTFA, dumbass (1, Troll)

segedunum (883035) | more than 7 years ago | (#19190089)

You're a dumbass. Territorial waters and airspace extend 12 nautical miles from the coastline.
No, that's not the way things work. The sphere of influence extends beyond that, dipshit:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exclusive_Economic_Zo ne [wikipedia.org]

12 nautical miles of territorial waters is the immediate control any nation has over the seaways around its coastline. As for the use of natural resources, salvage and marine resources, this logically has had to extend an awful lot further. There has been a general requirement to request permission from the nation when salvaging in their economic zones as in the case of a vessel Japan have been salvaging in China's zone in 2002. This wreck site could also come under cultural heritage agreements, although this is slightly sketchy. Salvage law is not applicable to that though.

They, being a US company, asked a US judge to do this. 40 nm off the coast is not territorial water, the brits have no territorial control over it.
Yes, they do. See above. Seems like a judge needs to read something about current maritime law, but the US never ceases to surprise me.

You, sir, a typical, useless, slashtard.
Typical anonymous fuckwit who thinks he can quote RTFA. But there you are.

Obligatory... (1)

penguin_dance (536599) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189255)

They later found they were just caught up in a Pirates of the Caribbean 3 [volvocars.net] promotion.

Motley Fool profiled the Odyssey corp. (3, Informative)

SpzToid (869795) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189257)

Here's a partial write-up from Motley Fool . com: http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2003/08/19/s triking-investment-gold.aspx?vstest=search_042607_ linkdefault [fool.com]

from 2003:

"Odyssey does not have enough assets to list on the Nasdaq National Market, so it trades on the highly speculative Bulletin Board exchange, a place investors should all but categorically avoid. We all dream of finding a hidden gem cheap and riding it to riches, but you're much more likely to find your fortune on the Nasdaq or NYSE, trading in double digits.

We're looking at Odyssey today as an exception, because it's August, half of you are on vacation, and this company has a heck of a fun story -- but all the fun is in the treasure hunting, not the stock.

Like flotsam (or a dead fish), the stock has drifted without purpose from moon to moon, just waiting for a current to carry it. In July, Odyssey announced the discovery of an unnamed steamer, and over the next month speculators lifted the shares from $1.50 to $2.95. After news of the SS Republic broke last weekend, Odyssey's stock opened Monday above $5, valuing the company at $140 million -- a price rivaling the maximum value of the discovery."

Now the stock is over $8.

How is the valuation done? (3, Insightful)

redblue (943665) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189297)

Presumably $500m is due to the historical value of the coins, not their mass. How do they go about making sure counterfeits are not slipped in? I would think that modern metallurgy is (IMNAM) advanced enough to fabricate any desired ratio isotopes in an alloy. Smells like Pump and Dump to me...

Idiots, it's "off" ANY nation! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189347)

"Found Off England", besides making no sense, makes it sound like this was some English-only thing. What was found was found on international water. As such, it's "Off" anything - including America, China, Antarctica, and even Pluto.

What's next? "Intelligence Found Off Zonk"?

Re:Idiots, it's "off" ANY nation! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189693)

Don't you think it makes sense to say "found off England" than to say "found 2819 miles off Florida"? Or is there something wrong with giving an indication of the location?

Re:Idiots, it's "off" ANY nation! (1)

I confirm I'm not a (720413) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189915)

""Found Off England", besides making no sense, makes it sound like this was some English-only thing." Aye, you're absolutely correct. From now on I'm going to refer to the Titanic as a ship that sank off the coast of New Zealand, the Bermuda Triangle as a region off the coast of Sierra Leone, and the Principality of Sealand as a sea-fort off the coast of Chile. I mean - it's all one big ocean, right? Wahey! I'm gonna become a geography teacher! Ph33r m3 4 1 4m 133t !!!eleventy-one!!!

Yeah (2, Insightful)

joshsnow (551754) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189421)

The coins -- mostly silver pieces -- could fetch several hundred to several thousand dollars each, with some possibly commanding much more, he said.

Not if there are thousands of them. Scarcity adds value. Hmmm 40 miles of the coast of England and they seek jurisdiction in a US courtroom? Sounds like a job for the SBS...

Supply and demand? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189429)

The coins -- mostly silver pieces -- could fetch several hundred to several thousand dollars each

Somehow I doubt that unleashing half a million of these '$1000' coins onto the market isn't going to drastically lower their going rate.

Supply and demand, anyone?

The Fools (2, Funny)

gijoel (628142) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189431)

It's only a matter of time before they realise the treasure is cursed and they have to go out and fight Johnny Depp. Then stab Orlando Bloom.

So I guess it isn't all bad news.

I'm sure this is illegal? (1)

rlobue (1099995) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189555)

As a Brit, I've grown up knowing that any treasure found on british land is the property of the queen... that is why treasure hunters here are doing it for prestige and not money. I'm sure this would extend to UK waters. I don't understand how a judge would, nay, COULD grant exclusive rights, that also makes no sense. I just come to the conclusion that either the company is lying or the company is going to get a law suit soon.

Re:I'm sure this is illegal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19189651)

It may have no value, but it means no one else will bother, and by the time the judge gets told his ruling is useless because he has no authority to make rulings about OTHER COUNTRIES! They will have excavated everything bought it back to America, avoiding all the necessary costs of say, doing it legally, and they'll sell it.

Re:I'm sure this is illegal? (2, Insightful)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189655)

> I'm sure this would extend to UK waters.

The coins weren't found in UK waters.

Re:I'm sure this is illegal? (1)

Speedracer1870 (1041248) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189807)

I'm SURE this is perfectly legal. It is in international waters, that would mean it does not belong to the queen. International waters are defined as waters that are more than 12 nautical miles (more than a statute mile) from the coastline or the established baseline. These waters belong to no nation. This is why Iran does not just go out and seize ships transiting the Strait of Hormuz, especially when they are on the Oman side of the Strait. There are different laws governing the high seas, which even include traffic laws. The queen can do nothing to a vessel operating lawfully in waters to which her laws do not apply. YAR! GIVE UP THE BOOTY!

There was no British Fleet in 1694 (1)

stevedcc (1000313) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189961)

The article states:

In January, Odyssey won permission from the Spanish government to resume a suspended search for the wreck of the HMS Sussex, which was leading a British fleet into the Mediterranean Sea for a war against France in 1694 when it sank in a storm off Gibraltar.

But the union of the parliaments between Scotland and England didn't happen until 1707. Therefore there was no British fleet in 1694; it was an English fleet.

Ecomomic Zone (1)

fozzmeister (160968) | more than 7 years ago | (#19189975)

An exclusive economic zone extends for 200 nautical miles (370 km) beyond the baselines of the territorial sea, thus it includes the territorial sea and its contiguous zone.[3] A coastal nation has control of all economic resources within its exclusive economic zone, including fishing, mining, oil exploration, and any pollution of those resources. However, it cannot regulate or prohibit passage or loitering above, on, or under the surface of the sea, whether innocent or belligerent, within that portion of its exclusive economic zone beyond its territorial sea. Before 1982, coastal nations arbitrarily extended their territorial waters in an effort to control activities which are now regulated by the exclusive economic zone, such as offshore oil exploration or fishing rights (see Cod War). Indeed, the exclusive economic zone is still popularly, though erroneously, called a coastal nation's territorial waters.
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