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Featured Stories on Boating and Boater Safety

Treasure hunters with MBAs

High-tech exploration and high-stakes bounties heat up the debate on the motives of undersea archaeology

Odyssey COO/president Mark Gordon (left) and CEO/co-founder Greg Stemm aboard the Odyssey Explorer.Treasure hunter, marine archaeologist or businessman? Articulate, energetic and clean-cut, Mark D. Gordon, Odyssey Marine Exploration’s 48-year-old president and chief operating officer, fits to a T what you would expect of a top executive of a publicly traded company listed on the NASDAQ.

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Court will decide who gets $500M haul

Odyssey Marine Exploration might have to give a half-billion dollars worth of gold and silver coins back to Spain because the treasure likely came from a Spanish warship and, if so, the vessel still belongs to Spain, according to a judge’s report.

All the evidence suggests the shipwreck, code-named Black Swan, is Nuestra Senora de Mercedes, a Spanish frigate that exploded and sank in an 1804 engagement with the British fleet, U.S. Magistrate Mark A. Pizzo writes in a June 3 advisory report for U.S. District Court in Tampa, Fla.

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Lobster wars: ‘Good people’ doing bad things

Maine shooting has roots in a generations-old conflict between lobstering statutes and ‘island law’

The lobstering community on Maine's Matinicus Island has a history of hard workers who are protective of their long-held fishing grounds.A shooting on Maine’s remote Matinicus Island has brought into sharp focus islanders’ historic ways of divvying up — and defending — prime lobstering grounds that have provided their livelihoods for generations.

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Three boats are sunk in second dispute

Two weeks after the Matinicus shooting, three lobster boats were sunk at their moorings in Owls Head harbor near Rockland, Maine, in an apparently unrelated dispute that authorities still were trying to unravel.

Two 35-footers — Git-R-Down, owned by Donald McMahan Jr., and First Light, owned by Keith Simmons — were found sunk at their moorings early Aug. 5 as lobstermen arrived at sun-up to begin their workdays.

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There’s a heroic side to the alleged shooter

Vance Bunker, the lobsterman accused of the Matinicus shooting, is a local hero who helped save three men after their tugboat sank one brutally cold night in 1992.

(From left) Paul Murray, Vance Bunker and Rick Kohls.The air that Jan. 16 was minus 4 F — so cold a thick layer of sea smoke hung over Penobscot Bay. Though stars were visible overhead, visibility across the water was very smoky. The wind was blowing 40 mph when the 75-foot tug Harkness, chugging back to Mount Desert Island, began taking on water off Matinicus.

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