One of the tunnels from Project Riese.

One of the tunnels from Project Riese. (Photo: Chmee2/Wikipedia)

This week, a pair of amateur treasure hunters claimed to have discovered a lost train packed with ill-gotten Nazi gold near the Polish city of Walbrzych.

But like all good potential scam artists, they are demanding to be paid before they reveal the location.

Their claim seems to be based on the legend of a loot-stuffed locomotive that was trying to escape Poland at the end of the war, as forces from the Soviet Union began pushing out the Nazis. As CNBC tells it, this mythical train was said to have left from the city of Wroclaw (then Breslau) in 1945 before getting trapped in a secret Nazi rail tunnel somewhere near Ksiaz Castle.

The Guardian is reporting that the pair claim to have used “ground-penetrating georadar technology” to locate the train, a nearly 500-foot long jackpot of Nazi riches worth well over a million dollars, including gold, gems, weaponry, and equipment. Now all they want, in order to reveal the location of the find is a promise to 10 percent of the value of the goods.

Not Nazi gold.

Not Nazi gold. (Photo: Agnico-Eagle/Wikipedia)

However questionable the find might be, it is not entirely without merit. While the area around Walbrzych was under German control, the Nazis began construction of a series of mysterious tunnels under the name, Project Riese (German for “Giant”). The Nazis fled the area before the project was finished, and the true purpose of the tunnels is still a mystery, but an undiscovered section of these tunnels could most certainly hold a hidden train car.

Only time will tell whether the two mystery men (who are insisting on remaining anonymous, contacting authorities via a third-party) really struck hidden gold, but their motives seem more than a little suspect. In the meantime, local police, firefighters, and military are convening to discuss how to proceed safely. Even if it turns out that the gold is real, to paraphrase, it belongs in a museum.