The Panama-flagged bulk carrier Top Grace, which was detained in South Africa last month after it was found that its crew threw overboard two stowaways has been released, according to the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA).
The captain and the crew of the ship have pleaded guilty before the Durban Magistrates Court to the attempted murder of two stowaways in late March.
The court sentenced the captain to a total of 5 years and three months of prison or R 160,000 fine ($ 8.449) for the attempt of murder and failing to report stowaways. The sentence was suspended for five years under the condition that he is not convicted of the same offense during the suspension.
Each of the six crew members, all of the Chinese nationality, were fined R50,000 ($2,640) and have paid their fines.
The release of the vessel in Richards Bay on Thursday after SAMSA’s investigation found that any further detainment of the ship would be unwarranted…