German ship management company MST Mineralien Schiffahrt Spedition Und Transport (MST) and corporate vessel owner Reederei MS Marguerita GmbH & Co. Geschlossene Investment KG (Reederei) have been indicted for falsifying pollution records.
According to the United States Department of Justice (DoJ), the charges stem from the falsification of records in 2016 and 2017 designed to cover up overboard discharges of oily mixtures and machinery space bilge water from the Liberian-flagged cargo vessel, M/V Marguerita.
As stipulated in the nine-count indictment returned on August 22 to a federal grand jury in Portland, Maine, the vessel’s management company, MST, and the vessel’s owner, Reederei, are charged with failing to maintain an accurate oil record book as required by the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships.
“On at least eight occasions between September 2016 and June 2016, the M/V Marguerita entered United States waters and ports with a false and misleading Oil Record Book available for inspection by the U.S. Coast Guard. The Oil Record Book failed to accurately record transfers and discharges of oily wastewater on the vessel,” the DoJ said.
The companies were also charged with falsification of records with “the intent to impede, obstruct, or influence inspections and examinations” of the M/V Marguerita by the USCG.
MST specializes in ocean transport of bulk cargo and its fleet comprises bulk carriers and multipurpose vessels.
M/V Marguerita is a single decker bulk carrier, built in 2016, and features 27,674 mt in DWT.
World Maritime News is yet to receive a statement on the matter from MST.