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Monday, October 21, 2019

Federal Law News

File Image: AdobeStock / © 14KT Gold

Tanker Owner, Operator & Officers Guilty in ECA Crimes

The owner and operator will pay a total criminal fine of $3,000,000.00.U.S. Attorney Gretchen Shappert for the District of the Virgin Islands announced that IONIAN SHIPPING & TRADING CORP., LILY SHIPPING LTD., STAMATIOS ALEKIDIS, ATHANASIOS PITTAS and REY ESPULGAR have been convicted and sentenced for various pollution, recordkeeping, and obstruction of justice crimes on the Motor Tanker (“M/T”) Ocean Princess in St. Croix, U.S.V.I. The defendants’ conduct included using fuel that exceeded the maximum allowable sulfur concentration in the U.S. Caribbean Emission Control Area (“U.S.

© Igor Kardasov/Adobe Stock

Maritime Recordkeeping is Serious Business

In addition to fuel, modern ships also run on paper or their electronic equivalent. Vessels are required to keep written or electronic records of many things – and the list is growing.There is the traditional Ship’s Log, which records the vessel’s position, course, speed, weather, and unusual events to name a few. The Oil Record Book (ORB) has been around for a long time and tracks all movement of oil throughout the vessel, including its loading, consumption, and discharge (generally via the oily water separator and overboard discharge piping).

The ship, crew, terminal team and Crowley.

Crowley Christens LNG-Powered M/V Taíno

Event heralds new era of world-class supply chain service. Crowley Maritime Corp. christened the U.S.-flag combination container/roll on-roll off (ConRo) ship MV Taíno today in San Juan, where the company’s investments have ushered in a new era of world-class supply chain services in the U.S. mainland-Puerto Rico trade. Clara Crowley, daughter of Chairman and CEO Tom Crowley and board member Christine Crowley, served as the ship’s sponsor and broke the ceremonial bottle of champagne on the bow of MV Taíno at the company’s Isla Grande Terminal before several hundred employees…

Wendi B. Carpenter, Executive Director of the Captain Phillips and Lane Kirkland Maritime Trust.

Carpenter Named Executive Director of Captain Phillips–Lane Kirkland Trust

Rear Adm. Wendi B. Carpenter has been named the Executive Director of the Captain Phillips and Lane Kirkland Maritime Trust.She has served as a Board Member of the Trust since shortly after its inception and has been closely involved with its administrative set up, strategic planning and governance.Carpenter is a pioneer of women in Naval Aviation and was the first woman aviator to be promoted to the flag rank in the U.S. Navy. During her distinguished 34-year career, she served in leadership roles that included deputy commander of the U.S.

Photo courtesy of Crowley Maritime

Crowley Takes Delivery of Second LNG-Powered ConRo Ship

Crowley Maritime Corp. has taken delivery of Taíno – the second of two of the world’s first combination container/roll on-roll off (ConRo) ships powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) – from shipbuilder VT Halter Marine Inc., of Pascagoula, Miss.Taíno will soon join sister ship El Coquí, which was delivered in July, in providing fast, reliable and environmentally friendly shipping and logistics services between Jacksonville, Fla., and San Juan, Puerto Rico. This major milestone marks the final chapter in construction of Crowley’s $550 million investment in the two newly built…

© Roy Ledford / MarineTraffic.com

US Fines Shipping Company $1 Mln for Pollution Crimes

A Japanese shipping company will have to pay $1 million after being convicted and sentenced for obstruction of justice and falsification of an Oil Record Book to cover-up intentional pollution from bulk carrier M/V Atlantic Oasis.The company Nitta Kisen Kaisha Ltd., owner and operater of the Atlantic Oasis, admitted that its engineers failed to document the illegal discharge of oily wastes from the vessel’s fuel and lubrication oil purifier systems, as well as discharges of oily bilge waste from the bilge holding tank and from the vessel’s bilges when delivering steel products to Wilmington…

© cascoly2 / Adobe Stock

US Women Dockworkers Accuse Shippers, Union of Discrimination

Four women dockworkers have filed federal discrimination claims against the shippers' association that runs 29 ports on the U.S. West Coast, saying they unfairly lost pay and seniority after becoming pregnant. Male dockworkers who temporarily left to serve in the armed forces got benefits denied to women on pregnancy leave, one of the workers, Tracy Plummer, said in an interview. Another woman with a complicated medical history said she tried to work during pregnancy for fear of losing seniority and suffered a miscarriage, according to her complaint.

Photo: Golden Pass LNG Terminal

US Authorizes Non-FTA LNG Export from Golden Pass

The U.S. Department of Energy announced that it has signed an order authorizing Golden Pass Products LLC to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries that do not have a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States. Golden Pass is authorized to export LNG up to the equivalent of 2.21 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of natural gas to any non-FTA country not prohibited by U.S. law or policy from the Golden Pass Terminal near Sabine Pass, in Jefferson County, Texas. With the dramatic increase in domestic natural gas production, the U.S.

DoJ looks back at 2016

The Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division has announced  the publication of its accomplishments in 2016, documenting one of the most successful years in its history of over a century, including the highest recoveries in environmental enforcement, record-setting recoveries in natural resource damages, and the highest criminal penalties handed down in individual vessel pollution and Lacey Act trafficking cases. “I am extremely proud and grateful to have led the men and women of this division through a landmark year in its long history of protecting…

A view of 350 kilograms of seized cocaine offloaded from the Coast Guard Cutter Richard Etheridge Monday at Coast Guard Base Miami Beach. The drugs have an estimated wholesale value of $11.6 million.

USCG Offloads $11.6 mln of Cocaine in Miami

The Coast Guard offloaded approximately 350 kilograms of seized cocaine Monday from the Coast Guard Cutter Richard Etheridge at Coast Guard Base Miami Beach. During an Operation patrol on October 27, a Joint Interagency Task Force South marine patrol aircraft detected a go-fast vessel suspected of smuggling contraband in the Caribbean Sea. The Royal Fleet Auxiliary Wave Knight and an embarked Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment diverted to intercept the vessel. The RFA Wave Knight crew launched a helicopter and a smallboat with a Coast Guard LEDET aboard and boarded the go-fast…

Ship Officers Charged in Oil Discharge Cover Up

A federal grand jury in Greenville, North Carolina, has returned a nine-count indictment charging two engineering officers employed by Oceanfleet Shipping Limited with crimes relating to the illegal discharge of oily wastes directly into the sea, announced Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden for the Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney Thomas G. Walker for the Eastern District of North Carolina. Oceanfleet Shipping Limited is a Greek shipping company that operates the cargo carrier M/V Ocean Hope.

Photo courtesy pixabay.com

Draft Law on Arctic Development

The draft law on the development of the Arctic region will be discussed at a joint meeting of the Presidium of the Advisory Council on the Arctic and Antarctic in the Federation Council and the State Commission on the Development of the Arctic November 20. The meeting was held under the leadership of the chairman of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko and Head of the State Commission for the Arctic, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin. The event will discuss a draft concept of the federal law on the development of the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation.

Greek Shipper Pleads Guilty to Dumping off Texas

A ship management company has pleaded guilty and was sentenced October 27, 2015 for deliberately concealing pollution discharges from the ship directly into the sea and for falsifying its oil record book, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson along with Rear Admiral David R. Callahan, Eighth District Coast Guard Commander. Chandris (Hellas) Inc. is headquartered in Greece and operated the M/V Sestrea - an 81,502 ton cargo ship that made calls in multiple ports in Texas. Chandris…

Where Arbitration Began: Maritime Arbitration in New York

In March 1656, Andrew Kilvert brought suit against Jan Geraerdy in the Court of Burgemeesters of the colony of New Netherland, demanding the release of his vessel, which had been arrested to obtain payment for the sale price of Kilvert’s ship. The practice of arbitration of maritime matters in New York, therefore, has its beginnings in Dutch law. Dutch rule in New Netherland (New Amsterdam) lasted less than 50 years. With the English takeover in 1664, most of the Dutch settlers elected to stay in what its new rulers named New York.

Security at Port of Long Beach

Port of Long Beach Awarded FEMA Security Grants

The Port of Long Beach’s Security Division has been awarded $3.4 million in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants to fund ongoing projects that protect the port. The grants will enhance port security systems such as physical security equipment and monitoring and detection systems, including the Virtual Port System, and improve the resiliency of port security systems, the port said. “Protecting workers and the community, as well as ensuring business continuity, are top priorities at the Port of Long Beach…

A flotilla of recreational boaters take part in an unsanctioned marine event on Lake Erie during the 2014 Operation Dry Water three-day weekend. The U.S. Coast Guard partners with other maritime law enforcement agencies during this annual campaign to reduce the number of alcohol- and drug-related accidents and fatalities while fostering a visible on-water deterrent. (USCG photo by Capt. Scott Anderson)

Great Lakes Agencies Partner for Operation Dry Water

U.S. Coast Guard and maritime law enforcement agencies on the Great Lakes and surrounding areas will partner up Friday through Sunday for the seventh annual Operation Dry Water campaign, a nationwide, multiagency effort focusing on boater education and raising awareness that it is unsafe, as well as illegal, to operate a boat under the influence of drugs or alcohol. “Along with alcohol use, three of the other top five contributing factors in recreational boating deaths are operator inattention, improper lookout and inexperience of the operator,” said Mike Baron, the U.S.

Retailers Applaud Introduction of Port Legislation

Senate bill aims to mitigate impact of labor disputes at America’s ports. In a letter sent today, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) welcomed the introduction of the Protecting Orderly and Responsible Transit of Shipments (PORTS) Act in the U.S Senate. The bill, sponsored by Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO), would amend the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) to provide state governors a mechanism under federal law to mitigate the destructive impact of port labor disputes on the economy at both the state and federal level.

Paul Lieb (Photo: KCC)

Ret. Merchant Mariner Reminisces about Training at KCC

Paul Lieb was among the first Merchant Marines to set foot on the grounds of the Sheepshead Bay Merchant Marine Training Station, when shortly after Pearl Harbor, the U.S. Coast Guard purchased 125 acres of property on the eastern tip of Brooklyn for a huge training center. Seventy-six of those acres were set aside for the Sheepshead Bay Maritime Service Station, now the campus of Kingsborough Community College. Lieb, who currently resides in Albany, visited the campus with his daughter, Elise Laurenti in 1980, when she joined KCC as an English professor.

The updated map: Image CSL

Ballast Water Management: California Update

The California State Lands Commission (CSL) has promulgated a letter to clarify its interpretation of existing ballast water requirements under the California's Marine Invasive Species Act (MISA) informs the UK P&I Club. In its letter, California recognizes that in certain limited circumstances under federal law a vessel may not be required to deviate or incur delay in order to conduct a ballast water exchange. However, CSL explains that MISA does not provide for any exemption based on deviation or voyage delay.

Al Westerman

Westerman Joins Parsons Brinckerhoff

Al Westerman has been named a Port/Maritime Security Specialist in the Tampa office of Parsons Brinckerhoff, a global infrastructure strategic consulting, engineering and program/construction management organization. In his new position, Westerman will provide maritime security consulting services at ports in the U.S. and around the world. He will prepare facility security assessments and facility security plans, conduct port vulnerability assessments, security training, technology…

Sens. Menendez, Booker Urge Feds to Expedite Road Salt to NJ

NJDOT wants Jones Act Waiver. U.S. Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) have jointly sent a letter to both U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson and U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx requesting that they continue to assist New Jersey with receiving a critical supply of rock salt. They acknowledged both agencies’ role in securing maritime delivery of a 10,000-ton supplemental supply for the Garden State. “The State of New Jersey has been among the hardest hit states this winter season…

Craig H. Allen, Sr.

The Coast Guard’s Proposed Maritime Preemption Assessment Framework

What it may foretell about the coming towing vessel rule. In the May 2013 issue of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News, Dennis Bryant published a provocative article titled Rebuilding the Presumption of Preemption. The Coast Guard has asserted in the past and believes today that consistent standards of universal application and enforcement, coupled with Federal initiatives to meet unique regional concerns, best meet local and national safety and environmental goals with the least disruption to maritime commerce. 78 Fed. Reg. 79,243.

Kurt Mix (Photo: Jonathan Bachman/AP)

Former BP Engineer Convicted for Obstruction of Justice

Kurt Mix, a former engineer for BP plc, was convicted today of intentionally destroying evidence requested by federal criminal authorities investigating the April 20, 2010, Deepwater Horizon disaster. Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Special Agent in Charge Michael J. Anderson of the FBI’s New Orleans Division made the announcement after the verdict was announced by U.S. District Judge Stanwood R. Duval Jr. Mix, 52…

Thomas Betro

Former NCIS Director Named Advisor at Ridge Global

Tom Ridge, President and CEO of Ridge Global, an international provider of security and risk management services, today announced that Thomas Betro, former Director of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), and VP at NTT DATA, has joined as an advisor. Betro will work closely with Ridge Global’s Flag Bridge strategic maritime team to help guide the expansion of a global maritime criminal investigation service. “We are fortunate to have a seasoned maritime law enforcement professional like Tom Betro on our team,” said Gov. Ridge.

(Photo: Rai Deepak)

U.S. Ship Owners in Quandry with MLC2006

The failure of the United States to ratify an international treaty pertaining to maritime issues is, unfortunately, nothing new. But the Senate’s failure to ratify the Maritime Labor Convention of 2006 (MLC), arising out of the 94th session of the International Labor Conference held at Geneva that year, will not give American operators in foreign trade an excuse for failing to comply. Complications could certainly arise – translation:  expensive delays – when a government official in a foreign port demands a certificate or other proof of compliance.

Attorneys Obtain Top Florida Compensation for Maersk Chief Mate

International maritime lawyers Jason R. Margulies and Michael A. Winkleman, of Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. , have secured the top verdict in Florida for admiralty and maritime law in 2012 for the case: William C. Skye v. Maersk Line Limited Corporation, doing business as Maersk Line Limited. The verdict was published in the 'Daily Business Review' a legal and business periodical that ranks and publishes Florida Top Verdicts. Attorneys Margulies and Winkleman secured the successful verdict on May 16…