Sunken Russian warship with gold worth $130B found after 113 years

Shinil Group say they found the Dmitrii Donskoi off the coast of Ulleungdo island east of South Korea

In the past, Russian researchers also repeatedly voiced skepticism over the decades-old claim that the Dmitrii Donskoi may have transported hundreds of tons of gold.

They also have said some gold coins could have been aboard the ship to pay the salaries of Russian navy officers.

The release was accompanied by photos and video of a wreck, including a section that appeared to show the ship's name. "However, the upper deck of the wooden hull is nearly untouched".

The armour on the side of the hull is well-preserved while the cannons, machine guns, anchor and steering wheel are all still in place.

The Shinil Group said it discovered the Russian cruiser Dmitri Donskoii of the Baltic Fleet in waters off South Korea's eastern Ulleung Island on Sunday. Shinil also asserts in its statement that it is the "only entity in the world who discovered Donskoi".

On its website, the company claims an address in International Plaza in Singapore, but when the Korea JoongAng Daily called this address, a Korean business consulting company answered.

In today's values, 200 tonnes of gold would be worth a whopping £100 billion.

It's claimed to be the sizable, heavily armored cruiser, the Dmitrii Donskoi, which ABC News notes sunk during the 1904-5 Russo-Japanese war.




The warship would have taken part in the Battle of Tsushima which saw Russian Federation defeated by Japanese warships. Her crew scuttled the Donskoi off Ulleungdo. The captain anchored off Ulleungdo Island and ordered his men to disembark.

Some academics have cast doubt on past reports that the ship is laden with treasure. The survivors made it to shore, where they were taken prisoner by a Japanese landing party.

Academics and historians have also poured water on the find, saying it would be highly unusual for Russian Federation to transport so much gold aboard a single ship. Transporting the treasure via train would have been far safer and a more likely scenario, they said.

"Investors should beware because it's uncertain whether the ship is salvageable and whether Shinil would be able to gain ownership of the assets even if it gets permission to raise it", an official who asked to not be identified told the AP.

The FSS was referring to Dong Ah Construction Industrial, a company whose construction business went bankrupt in 2001.

But Russia could argue that it retains full ownership - a claim that would be justified under global law as long as it did not infringe upon South Korea's sovereignty.

There is scepticism about Shinil's claim and the Financial Supervisory Service is closely monitoring trade activity involving the shares of Jeil Steel.

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