The Courier-Mail

We’ve struck gold train

Two men go public about discovery of Nazi booty

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WARSAW: Two men have appeared on Polish TV saying they are the finders of a Nazi train said to be laden with gold – a claim that came as the Polish military inspected the alleged site in southweste­rn Poland.

Identifyin­g themselves as Andreas Richter and Piotr Koper, the men appeared on TVP.INFO.

Authoritie­s in the southweste­rn city of Walbrzych said last month that two men had contacted them through lawyers claiming they had found an armoured train that poss- ibly contains valuables and weapons.

The report sparked a gold rush around Walbrzych, where tales have circulated since World War II that the Nazis hid a train full of gold from the Soviet Army in early 1945.

“As the finders of a World War II armoured train, we, Andreas Richter and Piotr Koper, declare that we have legally informed state authoritie­s about the find and have precisely indicated the location in the presence of Walbrzych authoritie­s and the police,” Mr Koper said, reading a statement on TV with Mr Richter sitting at his side. “We have irrefutabl­e proof oof its existence.”

Their knowledge is b based on informatio­n fr from witnesses and on t their own research, carr ried out with their own equipment, Mr Koper said in his statement.

They claimed that a le leak to the media was b behind the public know- ledge of their find. Retired miner Tadeusz Slowikowsk­i, the only living source of the train legend, confirmed to the AP that Mr Koper and Mr Richter had visited him saying they had located it and were going to report the find to the authoritie­s. He had previously refused to identify them.

He said the site was about 65km from Wroclaw, near where he believes the train went missing and where he was searching in 2001 but only came across what he believed was the supporting wall of a tunnel.

TVP.INFO said the train was not in a tunnel, as previously believed, but buried in the ground. Mr Koper said the two men were ready to cover the costs of the train’s retrieval and wanted it to be a tourist attraction. Any find in the ground is state property, but the finders are entitled to a 10 per cent reward.

The police are patrolling the wooded, shrub-covered site (pictured left) to keep treasure hunters from digging there.

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