Could this newly discovered shipwreck contain 200 tonnes of gold?

Pauline Gross
July 22, 2018

However, their claim was disputed by the Korea Institute of Ocean Science and Technology (KIOST) shortly after.

According to CNBC, Russia would receive half the discovered treasures. The Seoul-based Shinil Group carried out this significant exploration. Shinil Group claims they are "the only entity in the world" to have see the ship since. That's why South Korean officials have announced they will monitor the share prices of a company in which Shinil recently invested for indications of possibly deceptive tactics.

A handout photo made available by Shinil Group on July 17, 2018 (issued July 18, 2018) shows what the company says is the Dmitrii Donskoi, a Russian naval cruiser that sank 113 years ago.

There's more than one reason to remain skeptical, including the fact that similar claims go back decades and were used by at least one company to artificially raise its stock price to avoid bankruptcy.

South Korea's Financial Supervisory Services on Wednesday warned against "overheated" investment, citing past cases of treasure-hunting companies that saw their stock skyrocket after a discovery only to end up filing for bankruptcy.

Regulators are looking out for evidence of deceptive practices including whether investors were being misled.

"The Investor" website says Shinil is using the discovery and claims of vast gold find to fund its own crypto-currency.

But the currency advertises itself like a pyramid scheme, promising users 25 coins for joining the scheme and an additional 5 coins for each new investor the sign up.

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The first website is a newly launched cryptocurrency exchange named Donskoi International Exchange, which promises to share the profits from the wreck by giving out Shinil Gold Coins (SGCs) to users of the platform. Shinil Group is not listed.

The Russians didn't want the cargo to fall into Japanese hands because the ship was reportedly carrying large amounts gold.

The ministry said that Shinil Group hasn't applied for approval.

"We'll submit the application to the Pohang Maritime and Fisheries Agency on Friday", the company said. The gold was being stored in the ship's holds to stop the Japanese seizing it. Shinil Group estimates the gold would have a total value today of £101.3 billion.

It's not everyday your country is a key component of an undersea mission to locate a century-old shipwreck that could contain hundreds of billions-worth of treasure.

It estimated the shipwreck's value at 1.2 billion won ($1 million) and planned to put down 120 million won ($105,540) as a deposit.

"We'll soon go ahead with procedures to rescue the ship", the salvage company said.

Other reports by GizPress

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