Spain's Claim to Shipwrecks

eyemustdigtreasure

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The State of Florida and it's Archaeologists, claims by Spain to nearly every ship found along and off the Florida coasts and the Laws and Treaties concerning salvageability of shipwrecks and ownership can be thanked for such an environment. Sure, there are treasure hunters that are pirates that have looted many a treasure but Treasure Salvors most of which employee well respected Archaeologists, should never be compared to the former and not be hindered from recording & documenting the shipwrecks they find, recording & documenting the finds and from recovering the shipwreck finds which can be brought to the surface and displayed in museums and allows the Treasure Salvors some compensation for the hard and expensive service they provide. If the State of Florida, Spain and even the Federal Government continue to enact laws, rules, policies and treaties that deny Treasure Salvor businesses from making money to break even or possibly make a profit, then there may come a time when there will be armed confrontations at sea. I am amazed that there has not been any so far! I guess it is possible that there have been a few but none that I am aware of.


Frank

Frank, you are right.
There are professional salvage outfits,
that do the science, a carefully recover the treasure, AND the Public
gets to share in the history, by seeing real Sunken Treasure - stuff that dreams are made of...!
But, there are greedy state officials, that think they deal with this kinda thing often - so, THEY wrote the laws
for themselves - "everybody should be getting their hands in on it, right?" (NOT!)
- Or, the-guys-who-actually-do-the-research, spend the time and money, and sometimes risk their lives to do the recovery,
get all the loot...!
I like the latter of the two choices...!
 

magnetometer

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Spain abandoned and waived claim to all shipwrecks prior to 1648

Spain signed a treaty relinquishing all claims to their shipwrecks prior to 1750. I would appreciate any links to verification of this treaty. I know there is a post about this on Tnet but I can't find it.

In the Peace of Westphalia, the Treaty of Munster and the Treaty of Osnabruck to end the Thirty Year's War, Spain waived all rights to shipwrecks at the signing in 1648. Article II of the Treaty of Westphalia:

That there shall be on the one side and the other a perpetual Oblivion, Amnesty, or Pardon of all that has been committed since the beginning of these Troubles, in what place, or what manner soever the Hostilitys have been practis'd, in such a manner, that no body, under any pretext whatsoever, shall practice any Acts of Hostility, entertain any Enmity, or cause any Trouble to each other; neither as to Persons, Effects and Securitys, neither of themselves or by others, neither privately nor openly, neither directly nor indirectly, neither under the colour of Right, nor by the way of Deed, either within or without the extent of the Empire, notwithstanding all Covenants made before to the contrary: That they shall not act, or permit to be acted, any wrong or injury to any whatsoever; but that all that has pass'd on the one side, and the other, as well before as during the War, in Words, Writings, and Outrageous Actions, in Violences, Hostilitys, Damages and Expences, without any respect to Persons or Things, shall be entirely abolish'd in such a manner that all that might be demanded of, or pretended to, by each other on that behalf, shall be bury'd in eternal Oblivion.

(Full text: Avalon Project - Treaty of Westphalia )

Not only that, Modern Day Sovereighnty did not come into being until the Peace of Westphalia and the Treaties where the principles of Sovereignty, defined borders and complete autonomy to worship and govern without any outside interference (the Catholic Church and other monarchs) were first publically articulated. Virtually ALL historians and political scientist agree that this was birth of Sovereignty, thus:

1. Spain was not a Modern Day Sovereign, as it did not exist before then and therefore Spain has no standing as such to that period in US Court.

2. Likewise, Sovereign Immunity had never been practiced, did not exist before then and therefore could no be asserted as a right to that period

3. Before 1648, Spain was a quasi-religious entity and therefore could not have standing as Sovereign and the US Court could not hear religious edicts or doctrine as law

4. The present day world order, that upon which our United Nations is founded is called "The Westphalian System" . After 1648, the first country to receive Diplomatic Recognition from that community of nations that were a party to the Peace of Westphalia, was the Russian Empire in 1721 and we were off and running.



Everything Peace of Westphalia


By its own word, Spain's charter of authority was from the Church and God, the Supreme Sovereign:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanish_Requirement_of_1513


Please comment. There is a line in the sand, it just has not been drawn. If not the world will come apart at the seams.
 

magnetometer

Tenderfoot
Dec 5, 2009
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In the Peace of Westphalia, the Treaty of Munster and the Treaty of Osnabruck to end the Thirty Year's War, Spain waived all rights to shipwrecks at the signing in 1648. Article II of the Treaty of Westphalia:

That there shall be on the one side and the other a perpetual Oblivion, Amnesty, or Pardon of all that has been committed since the beginning of these Troubles, in what place, or what manner soever the Hostilitys have been practis'd, in such a manner, that no body, under any pretext whatsoever, shall practice any Acts of Hostility, entertain any Enmity, or cause any Trouble to each other; neither as to Persons, Effects and Securitys, neither of themselves or by others, neither privately nor openly, neither directly nor indirectly, neither under the colour of Right, nor by the way of Deed, either within or without the extent of the Empire, notwithstanding all Covenants made before to the contrary: That they shall not act, or permit to be acted, any wrong or injury to any whatsoever; but that all that has pass'd on the one side, and the other, as well before as during the War, in Words, Writings, and Outrageous Actions, in Violences, Hostilitys, Damages and Expences, without any respect to Persons or Things, shall be entirely abolish'd in such a manner that all that might be demanded of, or pretended to, by each other on that behalf, shall be bury'd in eternal Oblivion.

(Full text:
Avalon Project - Treaty of Westphalia )

Not only that, Modern Day Sovereighnty did not come into being until the Peace of Westphalia and the Treaties where the principles of Sovereignty, defined borders and complete autonomy to worship and govern without any outside interference (the Catholic Church and other monarchs) were first publically articulated. Virtually ALL historians and political scientist agree that this was birth of Sovereignty, thus:

1. Spain was not a Modern Day Sovereign, as it did not exist before then and therefore Spain has
no standing as such to that period in US Court.

2. Likewise, Sovereign Immunity had never been practiced, did not exist before then and therefore could no be asserted as a right to that period

3. Before 1648, Spain was a quasi-religious entity and therefore could not have standing as Sovereign and the US Court could not hear religious edicts or doctrine as law

4. The present day world order, that upon which our United Nations is founded is called "The Westphalian System" . After 1648, the first country to receive Diplomatic Recognition from that community of nations that were a party to the Peace of Westphalia, was the Russian Empire in 1721 and we were off and running.



Everything Peace of Westphalia


By its own word, Spain's charter of authority was from the Church and God, the Supreme Sovereign:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spanis...rement_of_1513


Please comment. There is a line in the sand, it just has not been drawn. If not the world will come apart at the seams.
 
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Salvor6

Salvor6

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Good Job Mag. I'm going to save that for future reference.
 

seekerGH

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1. Spain was not a Modern Day Sovereign, as it did not exist before then and therefore Spain has no standing as such to that period in US Court.

2. Likewise, Sovereign Immunity had never been practiced, did not exist before then and therefore could no be asserted as a right to that period

3. Before 1648, Spain was a quasi-religious entity and therefore could not have standing as Sovereign and the US Court could not hear religious edicts or doctrine as law

4. The present day world order, that upon which our United Nations is founded is called "The Westphalian System" . After 1648, the first country to receive Diplomatic Recognition from that community of nations that were a party to the Peace of Westphalia, was the Russian Empire in 1721 and we were off and running.

Please reference Case Law and the numerous posts on TNET on this subject.

From your post.

1. Spain was not a Modern Day Sovereign, as it did not exist before then and therefore Spain has no standing as such to that period in US Court.
Spain is certainly a modern day sovereign, and there is significant case law in the US Courts, as well as the world courts on it assertions in ownership, including shipwrecks.

2. Likewise, Sovereign Immunity had never been practiced, did not exist before then and therefore could no be asserted as a right to that period.
Sovereign assertion has been made (the present Kingdom of Spain is a good example) Sovereign immunity has been established and upheld in the US Courts. Remember, this is the Kingdom of Spain, and that has broad reach and ramifications, with the Sovereign and it assigns throughout history.

3. Before 1648, Spain was a quasi-religious entity and therefore could not have standing as Sovereign and the US Court could not hear religious edicts or doctrine as law
Philip IV of Spain was King of Spain, as Philip IV in Castille and Philip III in Aragon, and Portugal as Philip III. He ascended the thrones in 1621 and reigned in Spain until his death and in Portugal until 1640. Spain has been a united kingdom since 1641, when Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile united the Crowns of Aragon and Castile into one, creating the early modern Spanish state, Habsburg Spain. Prior to 1641, these were established Kingdoms, thus sovereign entities. Where do you get quasi-religious entities from? There has been a continuity of the sovereign for a very, very long time, much the same as other parts of Europe.

I wish anyone extreme luck in pursuing this legal challenge. Hopefully, you have deep, deep pockets, and the Courts will ignore the multitude of legal precedence regarding these issues.

First of all, the "state" doesn't give us a percentage. We agree to give the state a percentage. Secondly, it doesn't cost the state a penny in tax dollars for us to work a site. The state is the beneficiary of our work, not the other way around. The fact that leases are involved is a state's way of control. They don't own the submerged lands, they "control" them in the name of public trust.

Who owns the public trust, or who administrates the public trust?
If one looks at the Federal and State code, yes, in fact, according to Federal Law, the State does own the land. If the have placed the land in a public trust, that still means they 'own' the land.
One has to lease the area from the State of Florida, correct? The State of Florida is leasing land that they do not own or are charged with administration? IF the State determines that they do not own the recovery, what are the provisions in the lease contract then? The State of Florida cannot give you a value nor take a percentage of a recovery that they do not own.

I really dont think you 'agree' to give them 20%, I believe you are required to give them 20% of the value, as a condition to work the lease, correct?
Looking back at the lease, what are you required to give them 20% of, and especially, when are you required to give them 20%?

Does your permit to work a leased land, state you get a percentage of the recovery, or a percentage of the value of the recovery? It DOES NOT compensate for the costs of recovery. (no cure no pay)

One needs to understand this part of the contract, as it makes a VERY big difference on when and how one gets compensated.

Relevance:
On April 27, 1999, the district court found that the express abandonment standard applied to these shipwrecks and that Spain had abandoned its claim to LA GALGA under Article XX of the 1763 Definitive Treaty of Peace between France, Great Britain and Spain.
See Sea Hunt, Inc. v. Unidentified, Shipwrecked Vessel or Vessels, 47 F. Supp. 2d 678, 690 (E.D. Va. 1999). It further found that Spain did not expressly abandon JUNO in the 1819 Treaty ending the conflict between Spain and the United States stemming from the War of 1812.
In a later decision the district court held that Sea Hunt could not rightfully claim a salvage award because Spain, as the acknowledged owner of JUNO, had expressly refused salvage services. The Kingdom of Spain now appeals the judgment concerning LAGALGA. The Commonwealth and Sea Hunt note a cross-appeal with regard to JUNO and the denial of a salvage award.

JUNO and LA GALGA Case law: published from appeal. READ CAREFULLY

A.

Under the ASA, the United States asserts title to any abandoned shipwreck that is on or embedded in the submerged lands of a State. See 43 U.S.C. S 2105(a). Title is then automatically transferred to the State in whose submerged lands the shipwreck is located. See id.


Under the ASA, the United States asserts title to any abandoned shipwreck that is on or embedded in the submerged lands of a State. See 43 U.S.C. S 2105(a). The determination, "that is on' has been established as case law, plain and simple and can be cited.
http://www.admiraltylawguide.com/circt/4thseahunt.html

As noted with the Juno and LaGalga, the State of Virginia lost to Spain in part.

United States vessels may only be abandoned by an express, unambiguous, and affirmative act. Article IV of the Constitution states, "Congress shall have power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States." U.S. Const. art. IV, S 3. From this it follows that the Constitution precludes a finding of implied abandonment of federal lands and property -- dispositions of federal property require some congressional action. "[T]he United States cannot abandon its own property except by explicit acts." See United States v. Steinmetz, 973 F.2d 212, 222 (3d Cir. 1992). The Supreme Court has emphasized that the United States cannot be precluded from asserting its ownership rights by private property "principles similar to laches, estoppel or adverse possession."

Thus, the US Government affords this principle to other vessels. What is the point to continue to harass me? I am just trying to point out all of the issues. If one continues along the path illustrated above, you will likely lose, after spending a lot of money.
 
Last edited:

Vox veritas

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Yes, it all started with the "affair" Juno / Galga. Really Sea Hunt never knew if he found these two shipwrecks. He never officially declared that these ships were found. But Spain agreed to do so, because from this judicial case, had and has the opportunity to complain. Undoubtedly, reinforced his arguments the other scandal of the alleged treasure of the Mercedes. Odyssey, Odyssey from the beginning. Curiously (and casually) Odyssey arrives in Spain (Sotogrande marina) the same year that the problems of Sea Hunt (1998) begin.
In 2003 Sea Hunt signed an agreement with Spain to recover the Juno / Galga, but everything ended in nothing. I actively participated in the signing of the agreement, and in 2012, as a representative of Sea Hunt, I requested the situation be clarified, as this company has the legal 50% finder's right, as agreed with Spain in 2003. Spain never responded my request!
 

Vox veritas

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Yes, it all started with the "affair" Juno / Galga. Really Sea Hunt never knew if he found these two shipwrecks. He never officially declared that these ships were found. But Spain agreed to do so, because from this judicial case, had and has the opportunity to complain. Undoubtedly, reinforced his arguments the other scandal of the alleged treasure of the Mercedes. Odyssey, Odyssey from the beginning. Curiously (and casually) Odyssey arrives in Spain (Sotogrande marina) the same year that the problems of Sea Hunt (1998) begin.
In 2003 Sea Hunt signed an agreement with Spain to recover the Juno / Galga, but everything ended in nothing. I actively participated in the signing of the agreement, and in 2012, as a representative of Sea Hunt, I requested the situation be clarified, as this company has the legal 50% finder's right, as agreed with Spain in 2003. Spain never responded my request!

And curiously (and coincidentally) this agreement was challenged, without proper legal arguments, by the Spanish police and linked with my arrest of 2006. As I showed in 2014 by a report of a private detective, behind there was a link with Odyssey. Always Odyssey. And things have changed for treasure hunters.
 

Au_Dreamers

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"Under the ASA, the United States asserts title to any abandoned shipwreck that is on or embedded in the submerged lands of a State. See 43 U.S.C. S 2105(a). The determination, "that is on' has been established as case law, plain and simple and can be cited."

"That is on" is not the written law....
SEC. 6. RIGHTS OF OWNERSHIP. 43 USC 2105.
(a)
UNITED STATES
TITLE.–The United States asserts title to any abandoned shipwreck that is–
(1) embedded in submerged lands of a State; ,
(2) embedded in coralline formations protected by a State on
submerged lands of a State; or

102 STAT. 434
PUBLIC LAW 100-298– APR. 28, 1988

(3)
on submerged lands of a State and is included in or determined eligible for inclusion in the National Register.
 

Au_Dreamers

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Ok so enough of the dead horse, let's explore ways that we the citizens have a legal recourse when our Government is violating our agreements with them to be proper custodians of our property.

I see federal violations of the ASA law by multiple states. For now I will discontinue whether they are not following Congressional Record that was part of the bill moving through and ultimately becoming law. :BangHead:

So according to the written law..... emphasis will be mine...

PUBLIC LAW 100-298–APR. 28, 1988

SEC. 4. RIGHTS OF ACCESS.
(a)ACCESS RIGHTS.—In order to—

(1) clarify that State waters and shipwrecks offer recreational

and educational opportunities to sport divers and other in-

terested groups, as well as irreplaceable State resources for

tourism, biological sanctuaries, and historical research; and

(2) provide that reasonable access by the public to such aban-

doned shipwrecks be permitted by the State holding title to such

shipwrecks pursuant to section 6 of this Act,

it is the declared policy of the Congress that States carry out their
responsibilities under this Act to develop appropriate and consistent
policies so as to—





(A) protect natural resources and habitat areas;

(B) guarantee recreational exploration of shipwreck sites; and
(C) allow for appropriate public and private sector recovery of

shipwrecks consistent with the protection of historical values

and environmental integrity of the shipwrecks and the sites.


( (b) PARKS AND PROTECTED AREAS.—In managing the resources

subject to the provisions of this Act, States are encouraged to create

underwater parks or areas to provide additional protection for such

resources. Funds available to States from grants from the Historic

Preservation Fund shall be available, in accordance with the provi-

sions of title I of the National Historic Preservation Act, for the

study, interpretation, protection, and preservation of historic

shipwrecks and properties.


SEC. 5. PREPARATION OF GUIDELINES.

(a) In order to encourage the development of underwater parks

and the administrative cooperation necessary for the comprehensive

management of underwater resources related to historic shipwrecks,

the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Director of the

National Park Service, shall within nine months after the date of

enactment of this Act prepare and publish guidelines in the Federal

Register which shall seek to:

(1) maximize the enhancement of cultural resources;

(2) foster a partnership among sport divers, fishermen, ar-

cheologists, salvors, and other interests to manage shipwreck

resources of the States and the United States;

(3) facilitate access and utilization by recreational interests;

(4) recognize the interests of individuals and groups engaged

in shipwreck discovery and salvage.

(b) Such guidelines shall be developed after consultation with

appropriate public and private sector interests (including the Sec-

retary of Commerce, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation,

sport divers, State Historic Preservation Officers, professional dive

operators, salvors, archeologists, historic preservationists, and fish-

ermen).

(c) Such guidelines shall be available to assist States and the

appropriate Federal agencies in developing legislation and regula-

tions to carry out their responsibilities under this Act.


 
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Salvor6

Salvor6

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So it is clear that the state is violating the ASA laws. What can we do to correct this? Maybe we can get a sympathetic state Rep or Senator to help? I don't see this possible without a hefty contribution to their campaign funds! :laughing7:
 

huntsman53

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So it is clear that the state is violating the ASA laws. What can we do to correct this? Maybe we can get a sympathetic state Rep or Senator to help? I don't see this possible without a hefty contribution to their campaign funds! :laughing7:

As earlier stated, first form an Association made up of members in the Treasure Salvor and Shipwreck Salvage businesses, their' stockholders and anyone that has interests in these enterprises (i.e. suppliers of the equipment and supplies needed to operate). Pull funds together to file a Federal Law Suit that has teeth and/or file for Congressional Hearing.


Frank
 
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Salvor6

Salvor6

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OK Frank. You wanna get the ball rolling?
 

huntsman53

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OK Frank. You wanna get the ball rolling?

Now how would I do that? While I know quite a lot about the Treasure Salvor business, knew Mel and Deo Fisher and am interested in treasure hunting for treasure laden Spanish Galleons, I don't hold any stock in any Treasure Salvor companies nor do I supply them with the items needed for their' businesses. Also, although I have a fair knowledge of the Courts, Case Law and ways to fight the Evil Empire(1), I am not an Attorney! Besides, I live in East Tennessee and quite far from where most of the Spanish shipwrecks lie on or under the ocean's bottom.


Frank

(1) Let it be known that any and all Court documents will now and in the future, refer to the State of Florida as the "Evil Empire".
 
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Salvor6

Salvor6

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Well Frank you are the one that suggested to form an association of shipwreck salvage businesses and file a federal lawsuit. I thought you knew something about how to start this. I told you earlier that a shipwreck salvage association has failed 5 or 6 times in the past. It will take a lot of money to sue the state. GME is attempting to do that for breech of contract.

Is there anyone else out there that can make a difference?
 

ARC

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Besides, I live in East Tennessee and quite far from where most of the Spanish shipwrecks lie on or under the ocean's bottom.


Frank".

Hmmmm... I think a fleet / flota of galleons made their way up various rivers to sink in Tennessee somewhere :P

Seems like they have sunk everywhere else on earth. heh
 

Hoffensnieg

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So with everyone and anyone seeking to claim these shipwrecks...., can I throw my hat into the ring?8-)
 

Vox veritas

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One of the requirements agreed in the agreement between Sea Hunt and Spain (Ministry of Culture) of 2003 was that Sea Hunt had to obtain permits from the authorities. In this case of the Commonwealth of Virginia. But the problem was that the National Parks Service claimed that the area was within a National Park, although it was shown otherwise.
Peter Knollenberg, president of Sea Hunt, tried to get permits, but there were strong oppositions. The signing of the agreement did not like, and as I said was an argument of the Spanish police linked to my arrest of 2006. In the end nothing was demonstrated, because the agreement was 100% legal.

Convenio SEA HUNT - Cultura 01.jpg Convenio SEA HUNT - Cultura 02.jpg Convenio SEA HUNT - Cultura 09.jpg
 

Urban Legend

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It appears it would be a bit naive to assume there is a level playing field when it comes to shipwrecks and recoveries.
The entities that you have to deal with are arrogant and corrupt and are so insulated with like minded people...be it lawmakers or judges ...that they don't care how many times you take them to court...if you beat them they just kick it to another court that might review the case in another 5 or 10 years.
The only way I can see actual change occurring is to get someone on the inside ..and run a sting operation..set them up..(preferably with support of the feds ) The only things these people fear are grand juries and sealed indictments..
Once you get key people in place..either salt a scatter field or give the location of an Atocha type find ..and apply for recovery permits....and see how many legislators you can catch with their fingers in the treasure chest..
Unfortunately... federal indictments is the only way I think that change will come to the treasure salvage business.
 

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