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2003/07/01

No.483 オーストラリア海域での違反に対する調査への連邦警察の介入について

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No.483
2003年07月01日


オーストラリア海域での違反に対する調査への連邦警察の介入について


オーストラリア、BrisbaneのコレスポンデンツThynne & Macartneyからの情報によると、オーストラリア海域内での航海上並びに環境上の違反の疑いに対する当局による調査へ豪州連邦警察が介入し、船長が取り調べのため拘束されるケースが増加しているとのことです。


つきましては、オーストラリア海域を航海される際には船長へ次の点に注意するようご指示くださいますようお願い申し上げます。

  1. グレートバリアリーフ水域での座礁、油濁、衝突は現在最も注目される事件であり当局によりきわめて重大な事件として取り上げられる。

  2. 事件の調査のため豪州連邦警察やその他官憲が乗船する場合には、船長及び乗組員は、法的な助言を得るまでは事情聴取の録音、報告書等の提出並びに調書や記録書への署名に応じるべきではない。たとえ官憲が威圧的であっても、彼らは本船側の権利を理解しており、本船側が確固とした態度である限り彼らは穏当である。

  3. 本船が調査され、船長若しくは中心的な乗組員に嫌疑が掛けられるような場合には、重要人物が拘束され本船のスケジュールに遅延が生じる可能性が高くなる。代替乗組員の確保のためのコンティンジェンシー・プランを速やかに実行に移せるようにすべきである。

緊急時の当組合現地(Brisbane)コレスポンデンツの連絡先は以下のとおりです。



Thynne & Macartney
Level 29, Comalco Place,
12 Creek Street,
Brisbane, Q 4000
AUSTRALIA
Tel: (61) 7 32318888
Fax: (61) 7 32290855
e-mail:transport@thymac.com.au


なお、同コレスポンデンツよりのe-mailコピーを添付致します。


以上


<日本船主責任相互保険組合>






MARINE AND ENVIRONMENTAL OFFENCES AND THE AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE


Recent investigations of possible marine offences (navigational or environmental) in Australian waters have highlighted hardening attitudes by investigating authorities and increasing involvement of the Australian Federal Police.


Until comparatively recently,investigations of marine casualties were very often conducted by the officers of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority or their state equivalent.Icreasingly however, the relevant government agencies are engaging the services of Federal Agents (officers of the Australian Federal Police) to conduct investigations.Such investigations may well involve large numbers of armed agents boarding the vessel at the first opportunity, creating an extremely intimidating environment.


Attitudes shown by Federal Agents during casualties can be counter-productive and intimidating.Anecdotally, we are told that during a recent investigation on board a vessel that was still aground, and in the midst of efforts to stabilise the situation and decrease the possibility of environmental harm, a Federal Agent threatened to declare the entire vessel a crime scene and exclude all persons from it.


Similarly, until recently the authorities tended to have a comparatively “gentlemanly”attitude towards pressing charges against persons (usually masters) who were alleged to be criminally responsible for events for which they had no personal responsibility (e.g. oil pollution incidents or navigational mishaps caused by junior engineers or deck officers). The authorities often allowed a master to attend at a police station voluntarily, or simply served papers upon lawyers with no personal attendance by the master required. Recently we have seen increasing instances of masters arrested, kept in a watch house for a short period, searched, required to put up substantial bail and generally treated like common criminals even though they are not alleged to have done anything wrong, personally.


Masters of vessels trading in Australian waters should be aware of the following points.

  1. Marine crime and particularly groundings in the Great Barrier Reef region, oil pollution and ship/fishing vessel collisions are “under the spotlight” at present and are taken extremely seriously by the authorities.

  2. If the Australian Federal Police or other authorities attend on board a vessel to investigate an alleged incident, the master and officers should not agree to a taped interview or to provide a report or statement or to sign any statement or record, without first obtaining legal advice. Although Federal Agents can appear intimidating, they are aware of your rights and will behave reasonably as long as you are firm.

  3. If a vessel is or may be undergoing an investigation that may result in charges against the master or other essential officers, there is an increasing likelihood of arrest of key personnel resulting in potential delays to the vessel. Contingency plans for obtaining substitute ship’s staff should be put into action immediately.



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