Auction of ancient wreck haul stopped by police

Four treasure hunters from East Anglia at the centre of a storm over missing artefacts from an ancient wreck are facing prosecution from Italian police.

They were initially arrested by UK police in connection with handling stolen goods and given a caution for making a false declaration to the Receiver of Wreck.

A hoard of treasure, including gemstones, coins, jewellery and even the ship’s toilet, was due to be auctioned in London. But an investigation by the Metropolitan Police, Italian authorities and the Receiver of Wreck determined that the haul was stolen from a mid 19th century wreck in Italian waters.