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US crew claims $3 bn in sunken treasure: Report

world Updated: Feb 02, 2012 15:50 IST
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US treasure hunters have said that they have found sunken remains of a British steamer torpedoed during World War II carrying platinum now valued at $3 billion.

The Sub Sea Research, a company based in the northeastern US state of Maine, found the British ship SS Port Nicholson on the ocean floor some 30 miles (50 kilometers) off Provincetown, Massachusetts, the Boston Globe reported.

The Port Nicholson was sailing from Halifax in Canada to New York when it was torpedoed and sank in 1942. Four people died when the ship went down and 87 were rescued.

The Sub Sea Research team discovered the sunken treasure in August 2008 with help from a remote control machine tethered to their ship, the Sea Hunter, the paper said.

The cargo, valued in 1942 at about $53 million, was a lend-lease payment to the United States from the Soviet Union.

The treasure hunters said that there are at least 30 boxes scattered around the shipwreck, and they believe the crates contain platinum ingots.

"There's a good possibility there are about 10 tons of gold down there, too, and maybe some industrial diamonds," Greg Brooks, a partner in the Sub Sea company, told The Globe.