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Spanish galleon 'packed with £1 billion worth of gold, silver and jewels found at the bottom of the ocean'

EUROPE
By Mirror | December 5th 2015
Treasure: A horde of gold coins and jewels is thought to have been found {Photo Courtesy}

A Spanish galleon laden with gold and jewels is thought to have been found at the bottom of the ocean.

Colombia announced it had discovered the wreck of the San Jose vessel yesterday and is expected to give further details today.

Experts have said that if the size of the haul is confirmed the sunken cargo could be worth £1 billion.

Found off the coast of Cartagena, the ship could be packed with gold and silver coins - as well as a range of precious jewels - the nation's leader President Juan Manuel Santos announced on his Twitter account .

The San Jose sank in 1708 in the Caribbean Sea close to the walled port city of Cartagena.

It was part of the fleet of King Philip V as he fought the English during the War of Spanish Succession.

"Great news! We have found the San Jose galleon.

Tomorrow we will provide details at a press conference from Cartagena," Santos tweeted.

The government's claim on Friday did not shed light on a legal wrangle with Sea Search Armada, a US-based salvage company which had a long-standing suit against Bogota over ownership of the wreck. SSA said in 1981 it had located the area in which the ship sank.

SSA and the government were partners back then and following international custom, they agreed to split any proceeds.

The government later said any treasure would belong to Colombia.

In 2011 a US court declared the galleon property of the Colombian state.

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