Shipwreck salvager Tommy Thompson and his supporters repeatedly lied about the existence of an inventory of the gold that Thompson retrieved from the ocean floor, according to a motion filed in federal court this week.
In its motion for sanctions and its request for $1.7 million, The Dispatch Printing Company says that Thompson, his attorney and two former members of his company’s board defrauded the court and sabotaged its attempts to account for nearly a ton of gold that Thompson brought up from the SS Central America shipwreck in the early 1990s.
Dispatch Printing, which publishes The Dispatch, has been suing Thompson in state and federal court since 2005 after it invested $1 million in his search for gold and, like all the investors involved, never received anything in return.
The Central America sank off the coast of South Carolina in 1857 with tons of gold in its hold. Thompson and his companies, Columbus America Discovery Group and Recovery Limited, brought up part of the treasure and sold it for more than $40 million to California Gold Marketing Group in 2000.