Arrest Order on Ship Carrying Liberian Flag

Published: 12th March 2016 06:20 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th March 2016 06:20 AM   |  A+A-

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court has ordered the arrest of ship ‘TINA’, along with her tackles, engines, apparels, machinery, and paraphernalia, presently lying in the Indian waters at Kamaraj Port in Ennore for flying Liberian flag.

Justice KK Sasidharan granted the injunction while passing interim orders on an application arising out of a civil suit from STX Corporation,  a company established under the laws of Korea, having its office at Seoul, in Korea, on Friday. The vessel is registered at a foreign port.

According to the applicant, the owner of the vessel entered into a contract for supply of 492.672 metric tons of residual marine fuel. Accordingly, the applicant supplied the required quantity of the fuel. The sale was on the credit of the ship. The invoice issued by the applicant contained a clause to the effect that “buyer is presumed to have authority to bind vessel with a maritime lien”. It was further indicated that “disclaimer stamps placed by the vessel on bunker receipt will have no effect, and do not waive the seller’s lien.”

It is the grievance of the applicant that notwithstanding the demand made for payment of $ 115,038.91, the ship owners failed to pay the amount. The applicant finally issued a notice to the owners on March 9 calling upon them to pay the amount. Since there was no response, the suit was filed. Granting the interim injunction, Justice Sasidharan said that the documents available on record prima facie show that there is a valid claim, which would constitute both a maritime lien and a maritime claim.

The delivery receipt indicates that the applicant has supplied fuel to the vessel. The applicant has stated on oath that the owner of the vessel has not repaid the amount. According to the applicant, in case the vessel is permitted to leave the Port, it would  be impossible to recover the dues. In view of the reasons mentioned in the affidavit filed in support of the judges summons and the documents available on record, applicant has made out a prima facie case, the judge said, and ordered the arrest of the ship.


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