Two Arrested for Operating Unseaworthy Ship
The Australian-flagged MV Tomin was detained in the Port of Yamba, New South Wales, on June 25 after Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) inspectors found the vessel to be unseaworthy, substandard and a threat to the marine environment.
With support from New South Wales Police, the owners of the vessel were arrested on board and have been charged with offences under the Navigation Act.
AMSA inspectors found what appeared to be structural leaks and oily waste inside the vessel, as well as information suggesting the vessel undertook a voyage to Australia from the Solomon Islands without required certification.
AMSA notes that the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) applies to all ships on international voyages. Section 135 of the Commonwealth Navigation Act provides that it is an offence for an owner to take a vessel to sea, or cause or permit another person to take the vessel to sea, unless the vessel has been certified to comply with applicable provisions of MARPOL. The offence carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment or a fine of $126,000 or both.