Bulk carrier BESIKTAS KAZAKHSTAN and crew cleared in cocaine bust

Besiktas Shipping Group wrote to FleetMon, clarifying the drug-related incident with bulk carrier BESIKTAS KAZAKHSTAN, which took place in Carbonera port, Spain:
With respect to the news on your website about Besiktas Kazakhstan, we, as Owners of the subject vessel, would like to share with you the following brief statement of facts:
M/V Besiktas Kazakhstan had completed loading of her cargo at Puerto Bolivar/Colombia on the May 28th, 2016.
A thorough check across the vessel and underwater search had been conducted by Colombian Authorities prior to departure and the vessel had been found clear of drugs.
The vessel, then, had commenced sailing towards port of Carboneras/Spain to discharge her cargo.
After arrival at Carboneras, cargo discharging operations commenced on the July 5th, 2016.
The Spanish Authorities boarded vessel on the July 6th, 2016 in order to conduct a drug search.
They found two wrapped packages containing total 50 kg of cocaine hidden in the rudder trunk.
The Spanish Authorities confirmed that they had been following the vessel since the departure from Colombia and the packages had been placed by the divers at loading port.
Company representatives, the P&I representatives and the lawyer were immediately involved with the case.
Authorities declared upon completion of search and interrogation of crew that nothing was found to accuse our crew of being linked to the incident.
Therefore, the case was considered closed for both our vessel and our crew.
The vessel completed discharging operation and sailed from port of Carboneras on the July 12th, 2016.
Trust above clarifies.
Best Regards,
Capt.Mesut Karatas
(on behalf of Owners)
Chartering Department
Besiktas Shipping Group

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