Climber Who Found Nearly $169K in Gems on Mont Blanc Is Allowed to Keep Half

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The climber who found nearly $169,000 in gems in 2013, which were on a plane that crashed on France’s Mont Blanc, will be allowed to keep half of the stones, according to CBS News.

The stones include emeralds, rubies and sapphires buried for decades on a glacier off Mont Blanc following an Air India plane crash 50 years before their uncovering, CBS News reported.

“The stones have been shared this week” in two equal lots valued at around 150,000 euros ($169,000), Chamonix mayor Eric Fournier told AFP.

The climber will collect about $84,350, CNN reported. The climber who found the gems, who has not been identified, is said to be “very happy” with the decision, they told The Guardian.

The climber added that they did not “regret having been honest” about coming forward with the findings and told Le Parisian the money will be used to renovate their apartment.

The news was posted on the local municipalities Facebook page, along with images of the stones.

The local municipality of Mairie de Chamonix-Mont-Blanc council said they will put the other half of the stones on display for visitors to see.

The gems were being transported on board an Air India Boeing 707 en route to Mumbai when it crashed on Mont Blanc in 1966, killing 117 people, CNN reported.

The holdup for announcing who gets to keep the gems was due to authorities trying to find the stones’ original owners or their descendants, which ended in no avail, the New York Post reported.

“After a search for heirs that turned out to be fruitless, the stones were shared this week by two gemology experts between the municipality of Chamonix and the [discoverer],” the council wrote in their Facebook statement.