16 Aug 2012

US Federal jury convicts NZ company of polluting US waters

8:31 am on 16 August 2012

A US Federal jury has convicted a New Zealand fishing company of dumping oil waste into U.S. waters outside American Samoa, and falsifying records.

The jury also convicted one of the company's employees of falsifying records.

Sanford Limited, of Auckland, New Zealand, faces fines of up to 3 million US dollars.

Prosecutors say Sanford violated U.S. law by dumping oil waste into the water without using pollution prevention equipment.

They also said the company covered this up by falsely claiming such equipment had been used.

The oil waste, known as bilge waste, can be contaminated with oil, lubrication fluids and other liquids that leak from the ship's engines or pipes and hoses.