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LA judge to weigh ownership of jumbo emerald

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Posted: Sep 24, 2010 1:31 PM
Source: Associated Press

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Topics: emerald, Los Angeles, Bahia Emerald, Brazil, gem, Los Angeles, Las Vegas New Orleans, Hurricane Katrina, Tony Thomas, WBRZ

A small army of lawyers has converged in a Los Angeles courtroom to argue ownership of the world's second largest emerald.

The Superior Court judge is reviewing attorney documents on Friday before hearing testimony from the first of several people who claim to own the 840-pound Bahia Emerald.

Dug up in Brazil in 2001, the boulder-sized emerald is one of the largest gems ever discovered.

Over the years it has been held in Los Angeles, Las Vegas and at one point wound up in a warehouse in New Orleans that was flooded during Hurricane Katrina.

Tony Thomas, who is set to testify Monday, has said he purchased the emerald for $60,000 shortly after it was excavated.

Its worth has since been appraised at almost $400 million.

A judge will determine who owns the emerald.

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