The yacht of billionaire Evgeny Shvidler, Le Grand Blue, anchored in Gravesend Bay for more than a month ago, could not moor in New York, Brooklyn Paper writes. The publication indicates that the ship was also near the city during Trump's visit to New York, the first after his inauguration.
The ship, built in Germany in 1994, is flying the flag of Bermuda. In the event that the ship does not fly the US flag, it is not built in the US and is not intended solely for US citizens, federal law prohibits a vessel from directly entering from one US port to another.
The Merchant Navy Act of 1920, also known as the Jones Act, regulates sea trade in inland waters and allows US ships to easily navigate from one local port to another directly. According to the lawyer for the law of the sea, Jim Walker, the law was originally adopted in order to develop shipments by American vessels and to prevent those who tried to evade taxes or circumvent the restrictions, floating under the flag of a foreign state. In the event that the ship violates this law, it is threatened with evacuation or a major fine.
Shwidler's boat sailed from Florida on April 13 and anchored in Gravesend Bay on April 16, where it remained until recently. According to the data of the Marine Vessel Trafic portal, which allows tracking the movement of vessels, now the yacht is already in the Netherlands. This means that the ship left Gravesend at least three days ago.
Penalties for breaking the "Jones Act" vary depending on the cost of the goods carried by the boat, or on the cost of transportation - depending on what corresponds to a higher amount - and can easily reach millions of dollars.
In April 2017, the Ministry of Justice fined Alsakan for a record $ 10 million for using a Chinese vessel to transport equipment from the Gulf of Mexico to Alaska. This penalty became the largest in the history of the Jones Law.
You can avoid a fine, but only in extreme circumstances, when it is considered necessary in the interests of national defense, the publication indicates. For example, during an oil spill from the Exxon Valdez tanker in 1989, exceptions for barges under foreign flags were granted, which helped to eliminate the consequences of the incident until they were replaced by American ships.
Le Grand Bleu was transferred to Shivdler in 2006 by his business partner, billionaire Roman Abramovich. The ship has a helipad and a boat, 65 people are deployed on it.
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