Chartworld Shipping, Nederland Shipping and the Nederland Reefer chief engineer were charged with falsifying oil records and not reporting a hull breach to the Coast Guard.
The U.S. Justice Department said a federal grand jury in Wilmington, Del., on Tuesday indicted Chartworld Shipping Corp., Nederland Shipping Corp. and chief engineer Vasileios Mazarakis with failing to keep accurate pollution control records, falsifying records, obstruction of justice and witness tampering.
According to the charges, the companies and engineer attempted to hide their involvement in illegally discharging oily bilge into the sea from the Bahamian-flagged ship Nederland Reefer. The falsified records were discovered on board the ship by the Coast Guard when it arrived in the Port of Delaware on Feb. 21.
The falsified oil records are a violation of the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships, a U.S. law that implements the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, commonly known as MARPOL.
Chartworld Shipping and Nederland Shipping also were charged with the failure to report to the Coast Guard a breach in the vessel’s hull that resulted in seawater entering the onboard tanks.