Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Canada Puts Sea Shepherd Protest Ship Up For Auction

Potential buyers of the Farley Mowat, a ship owned by the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society that was seized by the Canadian government last year, have until April 21 to submit a bid on the former fishing vessel. In a court-ordered sheriff's sale, the ship, often used to protest marine activities -- including the annual seal hunt -- is up for grabs to the highest bidder, pending court approval. The ship was seized in waters off Canada in April 2008 and has been tied up in Sydney, N.S., ever since. The sale notice said the successful bidder of the ship, which was built in Norway in 1957, will win title to the vessel.It won't be without some risk. In a news release earlier this month, Paul Watson of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society issued a stern warning to any potential buyer of the ship, which he claims was illegally seized. "I have no intention of recognizing the validity of any sale ordered by the Canadian government," Watson said in the release. "Whoever buys the ship should be aware that we retain the registry and the original bill of sale and we will take back what is ours at the first opportunity. "You don't steal a ship from a pirate without repercussions." The vessel was raided after a confrontation with a Canadian Coast Guard ship off Nova Scotia. The U.S.-based group maintains the ship was in international waters observing the seal hunt at the time.

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