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Former Ady Gil (ex- Earthrace) captain taken captive

Feb 24th 10
Staff Report

According to a Sea Shepherd press release, Capt. Pete Bethune, formerly of Earthrace/Ady Gil, attempted to arrest the captain of Shonan Maru 2 , the whaling vessel that rammed into Ady Gil on January 5, 2010, ultimately causing it to sink.

The press release states: “[Bethune’s] mission [was] to attempt a citizen’s arrest of the skipper of the Shonan Maru 2 for the destruction of the Ady Gil and attempted murder of the six Ady Gil crewmembers. At 0600 hours, Capt. Bethune (of New Zealand) left the Sea Shepherd ship Steve Irwin on a Jet Ski driven by Larry Routledge (of Great Britain). The Jet Ski lay in wait for the Shonan Maru 2 to approach. With the Japanese vessel making 14 knots through the water, Routledge maneuvered the Jet Ski into position under the anti-boarding spikes along the port side of the Shonan Maru 2.”

Bethune also intended to issue the captain a bill for three million dollars – the cost of replacing Ady Gil.

Bethune said he will not return to Sea Shepherd until the Shonan Maru 2’s captain has surrendered to either Sea Shepherd or to Australian or New Zealand authorities at the closest port.

Sea Shepherd anticipated Bethune being captured by the Japanese and, according to another press release on February 20, this is indeed the case. No word yet on whether Bethune will be released.

Watch this space.


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End of an Eco-Era

  • There's many issues here, many opinions, many media reports of he said she said type thing and many very passionate beliefs as well. So its difficult to tell fact from media hype and TV, however major facts remain well documented. "Captain" Paul Watson is not actually a commercial maritime Captain, He just calls himself Captain as in the Captain of Sea Shepard the organisation. There is actually someone else on board who runs the ship but under the "guidance" of Paul Watson.

    With regards to Mr Bethune and his Stunt, well as far as I can see this was for filming purposes and media hype. Ady Gil who the Earthrace vessel was named after has already offered up more money to put another vessel into build. So as for handing over a bill. Well maybe he's after 2 new vessels or Ady Gil (person) came to their senses and decided they are all off their heads!

    I mean could you imagine any of our owners asking us to deliberately put the lives of our crew and the crew of any other vessel in that much danger and ram another vessel?

    If sponsorship doesn't pay, animal charity does? Looks look at the numbers!
    Posted by Global_Mongrel 28/02/2010 00:14:35

  • The pirates that boarded the Maersk Alabama may have loved whales too,but when they boarded that ship,that is exactly what they became-PIRATES!Do you want your yacht boarded while running down the old Bahama channel to the islands,or in the Anegada Passage?Of course not!Bethune will be lucky if he's not taken to Japan,imprisoned,and the key lost.The IWC has allowed the Japanese to take a certain number of whales,and that's what they're doing.Australia says they're hunting in illegal waters,but won't do anything about it in order to avoid an international "incident".A True Conundrum....
    Posted by Scottyacht 27/02/2010 21:05:26

  • There are better ways to sieze a ship, like using the authorities. Who goes on board a ship and demands such things. He is just asking for it. I love whales, I hate what the japs are doing but this is stupid, you have to admit.
    Posted by Miss B Haven 27/02/2010 19:42:31

  • Yeah, they captured him, by him sneaking onboard, and then refusing to leave until they surrender! ROFLMAO! Somebody check their water supply, I think its laced by crack. Its like real life Monty Python!
    Posted by CaptErik 27/02/2010 17:45:27

  • I support his motivation, but he puts his crew at risk... he might be better suited to hiring some ex-military dudes, and start a counter piracy unit..i'd definately join that one!
    Posted by Divemaster Harland_1 27/02/2010 16:39:04

  • I'm surprised they haven't started repelling boarders with shotguns yet.
    Posted by Henning_1 27/02/2010 13:18:08

  • I've seen the show as well. I specifically recall a scene where a young crew member was asked if he was willing to give up his own life to save the life of a whale. I have also read that the captain of the Steve Irwin was asked to leave his former post at Greenpeace for being TOO EXTREME. Can't say I agree with his methods or his logic (actually his lack thereof) but if nothing else he is consistent. I fear in the near future we will be reading about his making good on his prediction that one of his crew may die to save a whale.
    Posted by TiffanyS 26/02/2010 18:13:57

  • "...taken captive"??? I've seen the show and though I agree with the cause I do not agree with the approach. The Captain of The Steve Irwin is a maniac. Anyone with a modicum of brain activity would not set foot on any of their vessels. He not only puts himself and his vessels in jeopardy, but every crew member as well. His license should have been pulled long ago.
    As for Bethune (buffoon?)? He boarded a ship under his own free will. He is a pirate. There are other ways of recourse, namely court. To put all these people in peril in the most inhospitable ocean on the planet is just plain wrong!!!
    The Slacker
    Posted by 14Freedom 25/02/2010 19:15:04

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