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RISHI ETWAROO L'EXPRESS MAURICE.jpg Photo: Rishi Etwaroo - L'Express Maurice
Sunil Kumar Nandeshwar, captain of Wakashio

Wakashio captain faces 60 years in jail

The captain of the split vessel Wakashio is facing 60 years of imprisonment for failing to safely navigate the vessel in Mauritius waters, reports said.

According to L’Express news, Sunil Kumar Nandeshwar appeared before a district court in Port Louis in Mauritius on Tuesday for formalities and was returned to the police cell until his next appearance on 1 September.

The captain is subject to charges of ‘unlawful interference with the operation of a property of a ship’ that resulted in unsafe navigation, and he is not expected to be released from detention anytime soon.

Under the charge, Nandeshwar faces a 60-year prison sentence, it was reported.

No motion for the release of the captain is planned.

The capesize bulker Wakashio, owned by Nagashiki Shipping and chartered by Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), went aground off Mauritius on 25 July before it split into two on 16 August.

The forward hull section of the bulker has been scuttled, while the bow section has been successfully sunk in the open ocean.

Reports have said that approximately 1,000 tonnes of oil have leaked into the sea, threatening the biodiversity-rich marine ecosystem in the area.

Teams from Britain, Japan and France have arrived at the scene to assist Mauritius in assessing the damage and to help in the oil recovery.

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