During World War 2, Nazi Germany built over 1,000 U-boats, many of which menaced merchant vessels and supply ships in the Atlantic Ocean. Although the torpedo-equipped submarines initially gave the Nazis a major boost in cutting off Britain’s transatlantic trade routes, the subs were eventually forced to withdraw from the ocean. It has long been reported that towards the end of the war, a group of modified U-boats was commanded by Adolf Hitler.
As pressure grew on the Nazi leader and he was forced to retreat, a secret fleet of submarines was said to have been used for smuggling operations.
The long-range underwater vessels allegedly ferried gold, art and even Nazi officers out of Germany to South America as Hitler’s Third Reich imploded.
Decades after the war, a treasure hunter made a breakthrough in the search for the subs, according to a recent documentary.
The amazing find came after diver and explorer Mike Fletcher (below) was handed a huge haul of documents by the family of the late treasure hunter Roger Miklos, who died in 2018.
Mr Miklos, an eccentric and accomplished US treasure hunter, claimed in 1981 that he had found a sunken Nazi U-boat off the Turks and Caicos Islands near the Bahamas.
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Mr Fletcher’s efforts at tracking down the sub are followed in ‘History’s Greatest Mysteries’, the documentary presented by Laurence Fishburne.
Speaking in an episode released in September 2021, the explorer claimed to his team he had “cracked the code” after studying the cryptic trail of evidence left by Mr Miklos, who was notoriously secretive about his work.
He said: “We are the only people to see this.
“Roger Miklos was so paranoid that somebody was going to find his U-boat that he never wrote the location down.
“I’ve watched hours of Roger talking to camera, read all of his documents, looked at his maps.
Archive footage of the explorer talking about his alleged discovery appears in the documentary.
He said: “I swam down 45 feet, I saw the two back propeller blades, highly polished from going up and down in the sand.
“There are these enormous zeppelin fins on this damn thing and I go, ‘what?’
“And I realise ‘holy cow’ this thing goes and goes, it’s under an island.”
Mr Fletcher admitted that at first, he did not understand the wealth of clues left by Mr Miklos.
He said: “There is a simple pad of paper that lists some of the wrecks that Roger has found in Turks and Caicos.
“At a glance, it did not mean anything to me.”
However, Mr Fletcher explained that he later spotted a code used by the explorer in a yellow sheet in his notes, as it matched up with the language he used in old interviews.
He said: “By putting the yellow sheet and Roger’s words together, the code is cracked. We now have a location.”
‘History’s Greatest Mysteries’ is available on the History Channel US.