A U.S. District Court judge has fined the owner of a Bahamian-flagged cargo vessel $1.1 million for violating numerous pollution-control requirements.
Diana Shipping Services, the Panamanian company that owns and operates the Thetis, also was placed on probation for 3-1/2 years Thursday. A court-appointed monitor will keep an eye on the company’s business practices.
Ship engineers Ioannis Prokakis and Antonios Boumpoutelos received one year of probation.
They and the company were convicted in August of conspiracy, failing to properly maintain an oil-record book and falsifying records.
Judge Mark S. Davis ruled that the Thetis crew discharged oily bilge waste directly into the sea using a device commonly referred to as a "magic pipe" that bypasses environmental controls mandated by both international and U.S. law.
Prosecutors argued for a $4.4 million fine and a $1.1 million donation to a charity dedicated to helping oceans. Defense attorneys argued for a $400,000 fine.