This law is pending only a formality regulatory which is scheduled for January next year, giving way to tender to explore and then extract what's under the sea, said in an interview with Efe Colombian Culture Minister Mariana Garces. "Colombia has approximately 1,300 shipwrecks. Of those, according to historians, between five and seven can be galleons economic interest," Garces said.
The controversial law provides that the company that wins the bid to extract the wealth of the galleons can keep up to 50% of the objects of trade exchange value considered repeated: gold and silver bullion, coins, precious stones not intervened by man and industrial cargoes. Instead, all parts that do not meet this criterion will be considered repeat Colombian heritage and, therefore, property of the nation. 's greatest treasures seems to be the galleon San José, a flagship of the Spanish Navy ship sunk by gunfire in 1708 by English pirates off the coast of Cartagena de Indias with great wealth in their cellars. "Some say there are 6,000 million, others say there are 3,000 others say that San Jose has been looted, "said the minister, who also opened the possibility that the galleon is not in the place where it is believed.
And in 2007 the Supreme Court of Colombia ruled that U.S. treasure hunting company Sea Search Armada has rights to 50% of the treasure of San Jose if you are in the coordinates that the company claimed. "We're hoping to finish that ultimately judicial decisions (on San Jose), we are confident will be favorable to us, to establish the mechanism of exploration, "said the minister about this process that is still in court. Submerged Heritage Act, approved this year, also provides that the priority for extracting treasures submerged the Colombian State, but the minister acknowledged that the country "has technological developments in the field." Responsible for the public company would do Dimar (General Maritime) Garces acknowledged that they have not yet begun to work on developing a technology that permits it. The Minister also referred to the rest of sunken ships, nearly 1,300 that have no economic interest but scientific and heritage. "We would have underwater explorations for our history, not only with the only commercial mood. That's not our interest, not our priority," he said Garces.
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Greg Brooks of Sub Sea Research poses alongside the salvage ship Sea Hunter in Boston Harbor. Brooks will use the Sea Hunter to salvage the cargo of 71 tons of platinum now worth about $3 billion from the British merchant ship Port Nicholson which was sunk by a German U-boat in 1942.
By Doug Fraser
Treasure hunter Greg Brooks has burned through at least $8 million of investor money in his hunt for a supposed fortune in platinum, gold and jewels on a sunken World War II freighter 50 miles northeast of Provincetown.
But now he is considering ending his hunt and selling off expedition assets, including the main salvage vessel.
According to his own records and status reports filed with the court, Brooks spent less than 80 days at sea in his first five years attempting to salvage treasure from the S.S. Port Nicholson, which sank after being torpedoed by a German submarine. He gained wide publicity but now appears to be quietly giving up, despite insisting there are billions on board the ship, according to documents filed in a court case contesting ownership of the freighter's contents.
Three cannon have already been raised from the site along with 1,000 artefacts
The Alderney Maritime Trust and staff from Bournemouth University dove the site in October, the first time work had been carried out since 2008.
During the dive three cannon and "substantial ship timbers" were found and photographed.
Mike Harrison, coordinator trustee, said more work on the site was going to go ahead next summer.
He said: "Things move very slowly with marine archaeology, the work we've done in the last few years... has been conserving objects."
The unnamed ship sunk in November 1592 and was discovered by local fishermen Bertie Costeril and Fred Shaw in 1977.
The trust was established in 1994 and in 2004 the Duke of York became the group's patron.
Three cannon were among about 1,000 artefacts raised from the site in 2008 and replicas of the cannon were fired as part of tests about the technology of the time.
Two of those cannon have returned to Alderney after conservation work and the third is due to come to the island in the spring.
Other finds from the ship include what could be a Viking navigational aid called a sunstone.
The dive in October started clearing debris left by previous dives and carried out preparation work for a further geophysical survey to be carried out by Bournemouth University in the summer.
Mr Harrison said this survey was dependent on securing the necessary funding.
He said: "It's very, very expensive... we've got a lot of fundraising to do, it's tens of thousands of pounds, conserving a cannon is £10,000 for example."
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