Mystery 'cannibal rat ship' discovered in California was used as a casino by the US mob

Science Channel/YouTube screengrab

The mysterious ship wreck was discovered on a California beach, leaving experts puzzled.

First uncovered in 2016, the high tide revealed the wreck of a 300ft long ship close to San Diego, California.

According to a new documentary on the Science Channel, What On Earth? the wreckage was initially thought to be an old Russian ship that disappeared in 2013.

Designated for the scrap in 2013, the Russian cruise ship MV Lyubov Orlova went missing off the coast of Canada in 2013, when its tow line broke.

In What On Earth?, it was at first claimed that the wreckage had been buried in the sand on the California beach.

One contributor to the TV show, who claimed the 'ghost ship' had been taken over by 'cannibal rats'.

This ship is rumoured to have been taken over by hordes of cannibal rats.

I mean there's nothing else to eat.

However, given that it vanished off the coast of New Foundland, on Canada's east coast, how the ship reached the west coast of the US is unclear.

The show revealed that the remains found buried in the sand were made from a different material to MV Lyubov Orlova - concrete.

The SS Monte Carlo

A search of archives in San Diego reveal the concrete ship was one of 12 experimental vessels built for the Quartermaster Corp of the US Army during World War One.

If moulded correctly, concrete ships do actually float, and were created because of the short supply of steel.

After two years of service, the ship was reportedly sold off to the mob in the 1930s, and used as a casino as the SS Monte Carlo.

According to local ABC news in San Diego, the ship was a product of the Prohibition era, when the US banned the sale and production of alcohol.

The SS Monte Carlo was both a casino and a speakeasy - a bar were bootlegged booze could be consumed away from prying eyes of the federal government.

In 1937 a storm reportedly set the ship adrift and it ran aground off the coast of Coronado City, who took ownership of the concrete wreckage because it was too large to move.

Tides covered the ship with sand until 2016, when the investigation into its provenance was launched.

HT Mirror, ABC13

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