Fijian Courts Allow Stay Against M/Y Amadea Seizure until Hearing

12 May 2022By Staff Report
Credit: iStock/numismarty

The court proceedings regarding the seizure of M/Y Amadea continue in Fiji as the Fijian court will hear the owner's appeal on May 18.

The U.S. government formally requested legal assistance from Fiji to seize 106.5-meter Lurssen Amadea as a response to Russian sanctions on April 19. On May 3 at 3 p.m., the Suva High Court Justice Deepthi Amaratunga granted the U.S. warrant to seize the vessel.

Fijian police served the court order to Amadea’s captain on May 5 and the yacht was then handed over to U.S. authorities, according to the Office of Director Public Prosecutions press release.

The yacht’s registered owner filed an application to delay the seizure, but the court denied the application on May 6. However, the Court of Appeal has now ordered the stay to continue until May 18, when a full bench of the Court of Appeal would hear the appeal filed by Millemarin Investments Ltd., the vessel's registered owner, against the decisions of the High Court registering the U.S. warrant.

The seizure order had been in process since April 19 when Christopher Pryde, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in Fiji, was authorized to proceed by Fiji’s Attorney General. Suva’s High Court granted the order to restrain the vessel.

Pryde filed an ex parte Originating Summons under the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act in the High Court “seeking orders (i) that the motor yacht Amadea be restrained from leaving Fijian waters until the finalization of an application to register a warrant to seize the property and (ii) that a U.S. warrant to seize the Amadea be registered,” said a statement from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

In early April, the U.S. Department of Justice requested that Spanish officials in Palma seize the 77-meter Feadship M/Y Tango, and recently German officials froze 156-meter M/Y Dilbar.

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