Business is booming.

Court sentences captain to 20 months over Mauritius oil spill

By Omotayo Edubi

The captain and a freighter who spewed out a thousand tonnes of oil, endangering fragile ecosystem and crashed into a coral reef off in Mauritius, causing the Indian Ocean archipelago’s worst environmental disaster, was sentenced on Monday to 20 months’ jail.

“The court took into consideration the fact that both defendants pleaded guilty and apologised. The sentence handed down is 20 months in prison,” said magistrate Ida Dookhy Rambarrun.

The MV Wakashio, a Japanese-owned but Panamanian-flagged vessel, ran agrwadound in July 2020, spilling more than 1,000 tonnes of toxic fuel into the pristine waters of Mauritius, coating mangroves, corals and other fragile ecosystems.

The captain, Sunil Kumar Nandeshwar, who was convicted by a court in the capital Port Louis last week, admitted drinking during an onboard party.

He and first officer, Hitihanillage Subhoda Janendra Tilakaratna, were found guilty of “endangering safe navigation.”

“The captain and his second in command were irresponsible and did not deliver as they should on their ‘navigational duties’,” the magistrate said on Monday.

The MV Wakashio was sailing from Singapore to Brazil with 3,800 tonnes of fuel oil and 200 tonnes of diesel onboard when it ran into the reef off the southeast coast of Mauritius.

More than 1,000 tonnes of oil seeped into waters full of marine life from a gash in the vessel’s hull before salvage crews were able to remove all the remaining fuel.

Quality journalism costs money. Today, we’re asking that you support us to do more. Support our work by sending in your donations.

The donation can be made directly into NatureNews Account below

Guaranty Trust Bank, Nigeria

0609085876

NatureNews Online

Leave a comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Footer Image