9 Jan 2010

Piracy complaint lodged over collision

8:23 am on 9 January 2010

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has lodged a piracy complaint in the Netherlands against the captain and crew of a Japanese ship that collided with one of its vessels in Antarctic waters.

The New Zealand-registered Ady Gil sank at about 5am on Friday after being badly damaged in the collision with the Shonan Maru No 2 on Wednesday. Both sides blame each other.

Sea Shepherd calls the collision was an act of violence and says the piracy claim can be heard in any country.

It says the Netherlands was chosen since one of the Ady Gil's crew was Dutch and the Sea Shepherd's main ship, the Steve Irwin, is registered in the Netherlands.

The Ady Gil was formerly known as Earthrace, which in March 2007, was involved a fatal collision with a fishing boat in Guatemala during an attempt on a round the world speed record.

A fisherman was killed and another was injured. Afterwards, the crew was detained for 10 days by authorities there.