The state news agency EFE reported last Saturday that the Guardia Civil suspect that the Odyssey Marine Exploration company still has unspecified pieces of treasure recovered from the seabed hidden in a Gibraltar warehouse. Spain is currently claiming some 500,000 gold and silver coins that Odyssey sent to Florida last year which, Spain’s lawyers claim, come from the Spanish frigate Nuestra Señora de las Mercedes, which was sunk by the British in a battle off the Algarve in Portugal. Odyssey has refused to give details about where the treasure was found. Spain’s quarrel with Odyssey started when the company started looking for the HMS Sussex, which sank in a storm off Gibraltar in 1697. The Sussex is believed to have been carrying a large sum of money for Britain’s then ally, the Duke of Savoy. Spain does not recognise the three-mile limit round Gibraltar and is claiming that, as the Sussex went down in Spanish waters, any booty on board belongs to Spain. Last week, the government of Peru got into the act, claiming that the coins on board the Nuestra Señora de las Mercedes probably came from Peruvian mines.


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