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Advanfort president quits, 35 guards remain in Indian prison

Advanfort president quits, 35 guards remain in Indian prison
Advanfort, the private maritime security company at the centre of an Indian detention scandal, has revealed its president resigned in November 2013.

The company disclosed William Watson's resignation and replacement last week, the day after announcing a company restructuring, despite receiving Watson's resignation in November 2013.

Vice chairman Al Farajallah will serve as "interim chief" while the board searches for a replacement. Farajallah will oversee a restructuring of the company and its quality control procedures.

While Advanfort deals with its internal struggles in the US, a bail hearing on 6 March for the 35 British, Estonian, Indian and Ukrainian seafarers held for months in an Indian prison for was adjourned until 14 March. A bail hearing in December 2013 ended with the judge refusing bail for the group.

The men have been held since October last year when their vessel Seaman Guard Ohio was detained, apparently for entering Indian territorial waters without proper licensing for weapons onboard.

At the time, Advanfort claimed that the ship was offered safe harbour from a typhoon, that all weapons onboard were properly licensed and that they "look forward to returning this vessel to its duties as quickly as formalities and resupply operations are concluded."