Author Topic: Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish  (Read 3647 times)


  • Guest
Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish
« on: July 13, 2007, 03:59:34 PM »
Hi All

Thought this was an intesreting piece in the Tampa Bay Business Journal @

A photograph of the Research Vessel Ocean Alert taken by Vladimir can be seen @

"Odyssey Marine ship seized near Spain
Tampa Bay Business Journal - 4:16 PM EDT Thursday, July 12, 2007
Print this Article Email this Article Reprints RSS Feeds Most Viewed Most Emailed
One of Odyssey Marine Exploration's ships, Ocean Alert, was boarded Thursday in Spanish waters.

Spanish authorities boarded the ship 3.5 miles off Europa Point, near Gibraltar.

The Spanish Coast Guard subsequently ordered the Ocean Alert to head to the port of Algeciras in Spain.

The ship has now arrived in Algeciras, and an inspection of the vessel has commenced. An Odyssey representative has been informed that the inspection may take as long as two to three days, and it is anticipated that the vessel will be permitted to leave at the conclusion of the inspection, the company said in a release.

The boarding is connected with the dispute with Spain over ownership of the $500 million in gold and silver coins discovered by Odyssey explorers in May off the coast of England. Spanish authorities immediately questioned the origin of the ship, code-named "Black Swan" by Odyssey and have demanded better identification of the ship from Odyssey.

It has since filed claims in a U.S. federal court, arguing that it was entitled to the treasure if the ship was of Spanish origin.

Odyssey recently provided a 109-page legal affidavit to authorities in the Spanish Federal government, the Junta de Andalucía, the United Kingdom, Gibraltar, and the United States detailing Odyssey's activities leading up to, and after, the announcement of the "Black Swan" discovery. This document (which covered nine years of communications and meetings between Odyssey, the Junta of Andalucia and the governments of the United States, the United Kingdom and Spain) was provided in order to address questions posed by the Spanish regarding Odyssey's activities and to reassure all concerned governments and officials that Odyssey has always acted legally and with full transparency in relation to the "Black Swan" project and in all other shipwreck exploration activities.

Odyssey Marine Exploration (NASDAQ:OMEX) has several shipwreck projects in various stages of development throughout the world. "


Steve Ellwood

Offline jack moorhead

  • Quite a regular
  • **
  • Posts: 65
    • View Profile
Re: Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2007, 10:53:51 PM »
hi steve i sailed on the alert when she was a canadian coast guard cutter in 1971 did not know she was in the treasure hunting business.. was a good ship plenty of power regards  jack moorhead
sailed with as thordal  and served with canadian coast guard  and was employed by northern transportation on the mckenzie river canada also served as a regular soldier in rhodesia and zimbabwe  Now living Vung Tau Vietnam

Offline Holger Jaschob

  • Top Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 6,706
    • View Profile
Re: Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2007, 08:39:01 AM »
Interesting for me to learn about her history. I took some photos of her last year in Valetta.

Seemed to me as if she was there for conversion works.



  • Guest
Re: Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2007, 05:21:18 AM »
Hi All

Lastest update on the Ocean Alert - courtesy of:


Costa de la Luz
Search continues of Odyssey ship in Algeciras
By h.b.
Jul 14, 2007 - 9:10 PM

The Civil Guard have been searching the ‘Odyssey Alert’ ship which they escorted into Algeciras port on Thursday, to the anger of the British who consider the ship was boarded in International and not Spanish waters.

The search of ledgers and computers on the ship, comes on the orders of the instruction judge in La Linea, and is to try and find evidence as to the source of the 500,000 coins found by the salvage company, it’s believed from a Spanish galleon found in international waters last May.

The Odyssey lawyer, José Luis Goñi, said that the authorities would not find what they are looking for, and said that all the ships movements had already been communicated to both the Guardia Civil and the Coastguard authorities.

The crew of the ‘Odyssey Alert’ is meanwhile staying at a hotel in Algeciras as the legal proceedings continue.

The ‘Odyssey Explorer’ remains docked in Gibratar. She too is expected to be boarded by the Spanish authorities as soon as she leaves the rock.



Steve Ellwood


  • Guest
Re: Ocean Alert Arrested by Spanish
« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2007, 04:30:59 PM »
Hi All

Latest on the release of the Ocean Alert - story courtesy of the BBC:

Spain releases treasure-hunt ship

A US treasure-hunting ship intercepted and searched by Spanish police investigating a mysterious haul of riches has been cleared to leave port.
The Ocean Alert is owned by a company in Miami which recently raised a record haul of silver coins from a shipwreck.

Spanish authorities suspect the discovery might have been made in their territorial waters.

But Gibraltar disputes the claim, saying the ship had been boarded in international waters.

The Ocean Alert was stopped and boarded by Spanish police after leaving the British colony last Thursday.

It was then escorted to the Spanish port of Algeciras, where crew members were searched and computer equipment confiscated.

Acting on the orders of a judge, the police were hoping to pinpoint the location of a shipwreck which in May yielded half a million silver coins, worth $500m (£244m).

The salvage company has refused to say where it made the haul - which was promptly transported to the United States.

Initial speculation held that it was found off the coast of Cornwall in south-west England.

But the BBC's Steve Kingstone in Madrid says some politicians there suspect the mysterious wreck is of Spanish origin, or was found in Spanish territorial waters.

Seas and oceans governed by UN Laws of the Sea
Ownership of sunken property in international waters governed by the law of salvage and the law of finds
Law of salvage: If property is owned, those finding it are entitled to compensation for their salvage efforts
Law of finds: Salvor is entitled to all reclaimed property if it is proved to be abandoned
Spain insists it retains rights to all its sunken treasure
Odyssey intends its haul to be dealt with under US federal law, where previous judgements have sometimes granted exclusive rights to salvors  

Neither the police nor the vessel's American owners - Odyssey Marine Exploration - will confirm what, if anything, was found during the Spanish search. But the answer is probably very little, our correspondent says.

The American crew of the Ocean Alert were expecting to be stopped and even had a lawyer on board, he says.

It is understood that some confiscated items, including computer hard drives, have yet to be returned.

The dispute became a three-way diplomatic incident when Britain complained to the Spanish foreign ministry, arguing that Madrid did not have the right under shipping laws to intercept a vessel in international waters.

For now, the Ocean Alert remains in Algeciras and is expected to leave port after completing routine paperwork.

Spain has launched legal action over the treasure and the wreck.

But some experts believe it to be the Merchant Royal, an English ship carrying stolen Spanish treasure which sank in 1641.

US coin expert Dr Lane Brunner has said there is evidence the shipwreck was found off England's Cornish coast.

Odyssey has kept the location of its find secret, citing security and legal reasons.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2007/07/18 05:47:20 GMT



Steve Ellwood


SMF spam blocked by CleanTalk