Company a no-show in B.C. provincial court on English Bay fuel spill charges

Company a no-show on English Bay spill charges

VANCOUVER — A company accused of operating a ship that leaked bunker fuel in Vancouver’s English Bay in April 2015 failed to appear in British Columbia Provincial Court to face charges linked to the spill.

The MV Marathassa and Alassia NewShips Management Inc., a firm based in Greece, were due in court Wednesday on 10 charges, including discharge of a pollutant, but only a lawyer for the ship appeared.

The spill of at least 2,700 litres of bunker fuel in English Bay and the ensuing miscommunications among Canadian authorities and delays in cleanup raised questions about Canada’s preparedness for oil spills.

A lawyer for Alassia previously filed an application for judicial review in Federal Court, alleging Canadian authorities failed to properly serve it with summonses, but its case hit a bump on Tuesday when a judge said the company should instead seek relief in B.C. Supreme Court.

The company has said one summons was delivered to a captain who has no fixed employment with Alassia and who is currently the master of a vessel owned by a different company. However, Crown counsel Jessica Lawn said Wednesday the vessel is operated by Alassia.

Peter Swanson, a lawyer for Alassia, has said the company also does not own the MV Marathassa, but Lawn said outside the courtroom that ownership of the vessel may be determined by the court.

Swanson said in an email he was not in a position to comment on why Alassia did not appear.

The next court date in the case is scheduled for June 1.

In all, six charges have been laid under Canadian shipping legislation, two relate to alleged Fisheries Act violations and single charges are linked to alleged violations of federal environmental laws and the Migratory Bird Act.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Langley Rotarians work for clinics in Kenya

Local Rotary Clubs are asking locals to think of others at Christmastime.

Looking Back: Dec. 14, 2017

The community’s history as recorded in the files of the Langley Advance

Throwback Thursday: December 14, 2017

Can you help us caption a photo from Langley’s past?

Giants invite fans to toss teddy bears at Langley game

The annual Teddy Bear Toss takes place at this Sunday’s home game in the LEC.

Langley Christmas Fun: a listing of holiday events, Dec. 14, 2017 edition

Langley events: LangleyAdvance.com/add-event or news@langleyadvance.com (subject: Christmas Fun).

VIDEO: Carollers bring festive sounds to Langley City most Fridays

Shoppers will once again be entertained by choirs, musicians and bands this month in McBurney Plaza.

Debt-to-household-income ratio rises in third quarter

Total household credit market debt grew to $2.11 trillion in the third quarter

B.C. Mountie told to resign after texting teenage sex assault victim

RCMP documents say Const. Brian Eden sent sexually inappropriate photos to 17-year-old girl

Family doctors should learn to treat addiction, not shun patients: scientist

B.C. Centre on Substance Use’s Dr. Evan Wood said efforts underway to change addiction medicine image

Update: Small fire near Maple Ridge tent city

Occurred outside camp Wednesday night

Four dog deaths investigated in Cranbrook

One vet suggests a parallel to these deaths and similar ones in 2016

Meningococcal disease outbreak declared in Okanagan

Five cases in last six months among 15- to 19-year-olds, including one in Vernon

Military life gives way to chance as author

Retired Chilliwack officer pens book about life in Afghanistan

Province rejects Ajax mine in Kamloops

KGHM Ajax had proposed a 1,700-hectare open-pit copper and gold mine, just southwest of Kamloops

Most Read