Crime & Justice

Los Angeles judge to hear man's claims to giant emerald

A gigantic emerald weighing more than 800 pounds will once again be the subject of legal arguments in Los Angeles.

A judge on Wednesday is due to continue hearing testimony in the case of the Bahia Emerald, an enormous gem that was dug up in the Brazilian jungle almost a decade ago.

Since it was pulled from the rain forest, the emerald has been valued at about $400 million and has created a wealth of controversy over who actually owns it, with several people making rival claims.

A judge is currently hearing from Anthony Thomas, who says he bought it for $60,000 in 2001 but never received it.

Instead, he claims, the Brazilian miners who sold it to him kept it and told him the shipper lost it so they could resell it to someone else for more money.

© 2010 The Associated Press.