A bit of background - the "Washington Nugget", an 8.2 pound gold nugget, was found last year in California, and went up for auction earlier in the year. A nugget of this size and in this location is extremely rare, and as such, it sold at auction for US$460,000. The guy who found it is even selling his property for millions, suggesting that there could be much more gold to be found there.
Problem is - it's a lie. This nugget was found by J's uncle in 1987 in a tiny town in country Victoria, Australia. He's a full time prospector, and we even went prospecting with him last year when we went on a family holiday to Carisbrook.
Photo on the left, taken in the US from this site:
Photo on the right, taken from an Aussie prospecting magazine in 1987.
J's uncle is in talks with a US TV station who are hoping to fly him out for an interview in the next couple of days or so.
The geologist in the US who "authenticated" the nugget as being a true US one is apparently on the backpedal, saying that two Aussies are trying to scam him.
We're off to visit J's uncle to get copies of the photos and newspaper clippings they have from the 80s.
You heard it first! #nuggetgate!
Edited to add - the story has broken in the US and I'm adding some more photos that we just took down at J's relatives place: