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Amateur prospector finds $375,000 gold nugget

Friday 18 Jan 2013 10:21 a.m.

The 5kg gold nugget (Photo: Cordell Kent

The 5kg gold nugget (Photo: Cordell Kent

By 3 News online staff

An amateur prospector in the Australian state of Victoria has uncovered a huge gold nugget worth more than NZ$375,000.

The anonymous gold digger found the 5kg nugget 60cm below ground in Ballarat using a state-of-the-art detector.

The exact location it was found in remains a secret, but it was within 30km of the Ballarat CBD.

The nugget was taken to the Ballarat Mining Exchange Gold Shop, who is selling it on the prospector’s behalf.

The shop’s owner, Cordell Kent, told AAP it was one of the most significant finds he has seen in his 20 years in the business.

''We have 800 prospectors on our books and only a couple of those have ever found a nugget over 100 ounces (2.8kg),'' he said.

If melted down and sold, the gold would be worth around $375,000. But Mr Kent said that would be “silly”, and hopes it will be sold to a collector or museum in Australia.

Mr Kent predicts the find will prompt a fresh gold rush in Ballarat.

''A lot of people think Victoria's goldfields are dead and that there's none left, but he [the prospector] has worked in an area where a lot of people have worked in the past.''

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