5 days ago
Seized trawler to be sold
Legal proceedings were under way to have the "Melilla 203" sold which has been seized under a High Court order, by creditor United Fisheries in Christchurch. The warrant to seize the "Melilla 203" was executed on Sep 4 2015, the case file including an affidavit from United Fisheries chief executive Andre Kotzikas and 28 others as plaintiffs, claiming no money had been paid from an earlier judgement. The High Court had established the debt and the next step was an application to the High Court to have the vessel sold. The court process and eventual sale were expected to take several months.
Trawler seized in Dunedin
The "Melilla 203", idled at Dunedin for almost 2,5 years - was embroiled in further legal disputes. The stern trawler was seized in Sept 2015, under a High Court order, by a creditor. The sister ship "Melilla 201" was seized already in May 2013 by the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI), with the "Melilla 203" having came into port a month earlier. Three senior officers from the "Melilla 201" were successfully prosecuted last year for illegal fish dumping. She departed Dunedin in January, destined for a Southeast Asian scrapyard. The "Melilla 203" had been scheduled to depart from Dunedin this week, but that had since been dropped off Port Otago's departure list as a relatively recent High Court writ was in force, over a dispute between New Zealand charter company United Fisheries in Christchurch, and the owner, Tae Jin Fisheries Co Ltd. in Busan. The "Melilla 203" had not been seized by MPI nor any charges laid. Its registration as a fishing vessel lapsed in March 2013. The warrant to seize the "Melilla 203" was executed on Sep 4 in Dunedin, the case file including an affidavit from United Fisheries chief executive Andre Kotzikas, and 28 others as plaintiffs, claiming no money had been paid from an earlier judgement. Both vessels were owned by Tae Jin Fisheries Co Ltd. and had been in New Zealand under charter to United Fisheries Ltd. In late 2011 and 2012, they were embroiled in claims by their Indonesian crews over unpaid wages, and were held in Lyttelton's port under a High Court order. In October 2008, in the Lower Hutt District Court, the then captains of the ships and a shore-based manager pleaded guilty and were convicted of illegal fishing, having caught fish in one area, but reported them as caught elsewhere. The vessels were ordered forfeited to the Crown and fined $360,000 for illegal fishing. The owners had to pay a $300,000 redemption fee to get them back. At the time the boats had been fishing in New Zealand under charter to Tauranga-based Trans Pacific Fishing Ltd and were owned by Dae Hyun Agriculture and Fisheries Co Ltd, of Korea. Both Trans Pacific Fishing Ltd and Dae Hyun Agriculture and Fisheries Co Ltd went into liquidation and the ships were sold. Report with photo: http://www.odt.co.nz/news/business/357624/korean-trawler-seized-creditorUpload News