Pacific International Lines sentenced for illegally discharging oil into Guam
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) reported that Pacific International Lines (PIL) was sentenced for illegally discharging oil into Apra Harbor, Guam, and for keeping inaccurate and incomplete records relating to the discharges of oily bilge water.
PIL will be ordered to pay a gross criminal penalty of $3 million and serve a four-year probation period under which all of the company's vessels operating in U.S. ports will be required to enforce a comprehensive Environmental Enforcement Plan.
According to the US Department of Justice, PIL, Chief Engineer Maung Maung Soe, and Second Engineer Peng Luo Hai admitted that oily bilge water was illegally pumped directly into the ocean and into Apra Harbor from the 1,080 TEU Kota Harum without being properly processed through necessary pollution prevention equipment.
Furthermore, one of the PIL's employees acknowledged that the vessel's excessive leaks caused oily bilge water to accumulate at a rate that exceeded the oil water separator's processing capacity in the engine room bilge.
Rather than fixing the leaks before proceeding to sail, or storing the oily bilge water in holding tanks to be discharged to shore-side reception facilities, the oily bilge water was regularly discharged directly overboard into the ocean aboard the Kota Harum.
PIL pleaded guilty to five felony violations of the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships for failing to keep the oil record book on the Kota Harum up to date, as well as one felony violation of the Clean Water Act for intentionally discharging oil into a US water in an amount that could be harmful.
Maritime Business World