Detained vessel released but crew will be investigated & charged

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Police says it released the vessel it held during the lockdown because it was detained beyond the 72 hours as authorised under the lockdown order but its crew were investigated and would be charged.

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The landing craft was detained by RSIPF Maritime Police during last weekend’s lockdown for breach of the lockdown. 

“Police wishes to make this clarification after some social media users raise concerns that the vessel that was detained by police during the lock down was released without being dealt with,” a statement from RSIPF Media said.

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Deputy Commissioner (DC) National Security and Operational Support Ian Vaevaso explained that the vessel was released after it was held by Police beyond the 72 hours that was authorised under the lockdown order.

“This does not mean that the vessel will not be held accountable for the breach of the lockdown. The decision to charge the vessel was made after the Solomon Islands Maritime Authority (SIMA) produced a technical assessment report that there is no excuse for the vessel to travel to Honiara during the lockdown,” Vaevaso said.

He adds, “The captain and crew are investigated by the National Criminal Investigation Department (NCID) and will be charged as soon as all the evidence is collected.”

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