DUNFERMLINE justice campaigner Tom Minogue is continuing to contest a court action over the ownership of a historic gold wreath valued at £225,000.

Lord Bannatyne has the task of unravelling the wrangle over the ancient relic which goes back almost 2500 years, after it turned up in Scotland.

Mr Minogue (pictured) had sought to have the adjustment period in the court process continued for six months but the judge decided that was “too long” and instead allowed a further period of six weeks.

Murat Aksakalli and the Turkish Government have both laid claim to the 4th century BC wreath made of ancient gold, which was believed to have been a funeral gift for royalty or nobility.

Mystery surrounds the past of the grave decoration but Mr Minogue argues it matches the description of an item obtained by “violation of spulchre” by those acting for Thomas Bruce, the 7th Earl of Elgin in 1802.

He maintained that it did not belong to the aristocrat and cannot belong to anyone other than the owners of the burial lair it was removed from in Greece.

The action was raised at the Court of Session in Edinburgh by Police Scotland Chief Constable Sir Stephen House after Mr Aksakalli and two others were detained in October 2010. No criminal proceedings were brought and the Lord Advocate later instructed that the wreath should be returned to its owner.

Mr Aksakalli, of Northfield Grove, Edinburgh, sought to get it back and maintained it was a family heirloom.

However, the Turkish Government also claimed ownership and experts it instructed said they believed it was stolen from the Zeus Tapinagi site at the Menandros Monument.

The chief constable raised the action to get authority to dispose of the wreath. It is said that because of the competing claims he is unable to determine ownership.

Mr Minogue told Lord Bannantyne that he had been pursuing freedom of information requests over the issue and required the extra time. Kirsty Hood, counsel for the chief constable, said that the extension sought was very long and would result in considerable delays in litigation.

The actions of Thomas Bruce in removing the so-called ‘Elgin Marbles’ from the Parthenon in Athens are still argued over more than 200 years on and the Greek Government wants the priceless items returned there from the British Museum.

In 2004, Mr Minogue wrote to Peter Wilson, then Fife Chief Constable, to formally complain that the residents of Broomhall, the ancestral home of the Earls of Elgin, “harboured funereal items obtained by tomb robbing” carried out by the 7th Earl in Ottoman-occupied Greece between 1801 and 1811.