Dutch treasure hunt after Nazi map revealed to hide gold and diamonds

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An ancient map that supposedly marks the spot where German soldiers hid treasures worth millions of euros during World War Two has captured the imagination of amateur treasure hunters in the Netherlands this week.

Armed with metal detectors and shovels, groups roamed the fields around the eastern countryside of Ommeren after the map was released by the Dutch National Archives on Tuesday.

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The Archive said the map is believed to indicate where Nazi soldiers hid four large boxes filled with diamonds, rubies, gold, silver and all kinds of jewelry that they had looted after an explosion at a bank in August 1944.

The map was obtained from a German soldier shortly after the war by the Dutch institute which was tasked with tracking German assets in the Netherlands after the country was liberated from Nazi occupation in 1945.

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The research file containing the map was revealed this week as the maximum period of 75 years it could be kept confidential had expired.

While the treasure’s existence was never fully confirmed, the institute made several failed attempts to find it in 1947, National Archives spokeswoman Anne-Marieke Samson told Reuters.

“We don’t know for sure if the treasure existed. But the institute did several checks and found the story to be credible,” Samson said.

Dutch go on a treasure hunt after reveal of ancient Nazi map that would hide gold and diamonds

“But they never found it, and if it did exist, the treasure could very well have already been unearthed,” he added.

But the small chance of finding valuables did not deter the amateur prospectors.

“I see groups of people with metal detectors everywhere,” Jan Henzen, 57, told Reuters as he took a break from his own search.

“Like many people, the news of the treasure made me go look for it myself. The chance of the treasure still being here after 70 years is very slim I think, but I want to try.”

Former Ommeren mayor Klaas Tammes, who now runs the foundation that owns the land that could hide the treasure, said he had seen people from across the country.

“A map with a row of three trees and a red cross marking a place where a treasure should be hidden sparks the imagination,” he said.

“Anyone who finds anything will have to report it to us, so we’ll see. But I didn’t expect it to be easy.”

Source: CNN Brasil

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