Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2017. 10:46 a.m. CST.
By BBN Staff: In 1857, the S.S. Central America, a gold-rush era ship sank off South Carolina in a hurricane.
Tommy Thompson, a deep sea treasure hunter found the ship in 1988 in what was considered a historic discovery. He spent years studying the ship’s voyage and developing technology to plunge deeper in the ocean to retrieve the treasure, the Columbus Monthly newspaper says.
There were 161 investors who paid Thompson nearly $13 million to find the ship. They never saw any proceeds.
Two of those investors have since sued Thompson.
Thompson is accused of finding and hiding 500 missing gold coins that he recovered from the ship.
In 2015, Thompson and his girlfriend were caught in a Florida hotel room with $420,000 in $100 bills.
On December 15, 2016; the Daily News reported that Thompson remained locked up in Ohio and has been ordered to pay $1,000 a day by Judge Algenon Marbley until he answers questions about the gold and other assets. He owes more than $350,000; according to Doug Squires, an assistant U.S. attorney.
According to the Daily News, yesterday a federal judge offered the former deep-sea treasure hunter another chance to reveal information about the location of 500 missing gold coins. The judge instructed government prosecutors to draft an order related to the coins involving a Belize-based trust.
The order would allow Thompson to give written consent for the government to probe the contents of the trust.
A trust representative has refused to allow an inspection of the trust without Thompson’s consent.
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