2 Engineers Sentenced To 6 Years In Prison For Dumping Oil Waste Off New Jersey Coast

Oil Tanker Ship
Image for representation purposes only

Konstantinos Atsalis and Sonny Bosito, two engineers who pleaded guilty to dumping oily waste into the sea near a petroleum facility in Sewaren, New Jersey, are now facing federal prosecution.

During the violations, Atsalis, the chief engineer, and Bosito, the second engineer, were on board the Kriti Ruby, a Greek-owned and registered product tanker.

According to sources, the actions took place over several months in 2022; however, the exact dates were not revealed by the US Coast Guard or the US Attorney’s Office.

Both engineers admitted to intentionally avoiding authorized pollution prevention devices by releasing oily waste from the vessel’s engine room into the sea, particularly near the Sewaren petroleum port.

According to court testimony, before the Coast Guard boarded the vessel, Atsalis instructed crew members to hide equipment used for transferring greasy waste.

He also admitted to falsifying the vessel’s oil record book to cover his actions.

Similarly, Bosito agreed to hide the discharge of oily waste by giving the US Coast Guard incorrect information and instructing crew members to hide equipment during inspections.

The Kriti Ruby had past issues with the United States Coast Guard, with faults discovered during a 2022 enhanced examination in New York, resulting in a seven-day detention.

Atsalis, 57, and Bosito, 54, each face up to six years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The sentencing date is set for October 22.

The case emphasizes the need to adhere to environmental standards in maritime activities.

The Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS) provides stringent penalties for violations to protect marine ecosystems and coastal areas from pollution.

This incident also coincides with a rise in detentions during Port State inspections, as reported in the US Coast Guard’s annual inspections report.

While the exact reasons for the increase are unknown, authorities believe it could be influenced by the pandemic’s impact on inspection procedures.

Reference: Daily News

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