FMC Raises USD 520,000 Mln in Civil Penalties

The United States Federal Maritime Commission has completed compromise agreements recovering a total of USD 520,000 in civil penalties.

The agreements were reached with one vessel-operating common carrier and four ocean transportation intermediaries (both non-vessel-operating common carriers and freight forwarders).

The companies in question include German vessel-operating common carrier providing roll on-roll off (RO-RO) services Volkswagen Konzernlogistiks GmbH & Co. OHG (VWKL) that paid USD 170,000 in penalties.

VWKL disclosed that, over an extended time period, it operated based on unfiled space charters with other operators of RO-RO vessels and agreement amendments which were filed with the Commission but not yet effective under section 6 of the Shipping Act.

The non-vessel-operating carriers are Taiwan’s Orient Star Transport International that paid USD 135,000, Ba-Shi Yuexin Logistics Development based in Alhambra, CA that paid USD 100,000 in penalties, Thornley & Pitt, Inc. located in Millbrae, CA. that made a payment of USD 65,000 and Razor Enterprise Inc. with offices in Jamaica, NY that paid USD 50,000.

The four were charged with obtaining transportation at less than applicable rates by means of improperly obtaining access to service contracts.

“The agreements and penalties announced today demonstrate the continued hard work and vigilance of the Commission’s Area Representatives and Bureau of Enforcement to protect the shipping public from fraud and unfair practices. Our objectives are to ensure fair trade and compliance by all segments of the maritime industry, vessel operators and OTIs alike, FMC Chairman Mario Cordero said.