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April 23, 2014

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Judge rejects businessman’s claim to $372M emerald

Updated Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014 | 6:23 a.m.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge has rejected a businessman's bid to be declared the rightful owner of an 840-pound emerald that has been appraised at $372 million.

Judge John Kronstadt ruled Wednesday that the claims of Anthony Thomas to the Bahia Emerald were "not credible."

But the long fight over the huge gem isn't over. Two more parties — gem buyer Mark Downie and business Ferrara Morrison Holdings — both claim ownership and another trial awaits.

A judge in 2011 tentatively dismissed the claim of Thomas, who said he'd bought the emerald from Brazilian miners for $60,000. But when that judge was promoted, Kronstadt declared a mistrial and reheard the case himself last year.

The 3-foot-tall Bahia is one of the world's largest emeralds with about 180,000 carats.