The Solomon Islands government is reported to be set to recover $NZ1.8 billion worth of gold bars thought to be on the ocean floor between Guadalcanal and Malaita.
Freelance journalist Alfred Sasako, a former MP, says he understands the gold is in the wreck of a Japanese ship sunk during the second world war.
He says a man from Isabel province in Solomon Islands, who had been on board the ship, told his son just before his death where to find the wreck and its cargo.
Mr Sasako says the government is harrassing the man for the wreck's location and has hired heavily armed foreign mercenaries to recover its precious cargo.
He says how to get a share of the gold has been the subject of many late night squabbles between government ministers.