The GNMTC tanker Badr has been under arrest in Bourgas, Bulgaria since November 2017 on the basis of a fraudulent mortgage according to the owners, Libyan Navigation Limited, a subsidiary of GNMTC.
The mortgage was supposedly executed in September 2017 by a public notary in Greece, Mrs Ioanna Andreadakis, against debts due to Bulgarian company, Bulgargeomin Ltd.
Mrs Andreadakis now claims that she was deceived, and she has filed a complaint with the district attorney in Athens against the person who she believed forged the documents.
The real owner of Badr, Libyan Navigation Limited, have found that every attempt to release the vessel is met with obstruction, to the point that the Bulgarian Public Prosecutor has ordered a criminal investigation into the matter.
According to a letter sent by Libyan Ports and Maritime Authority president Omar Algawashi to the Joint War Committee of Lloyd’s Market Association, seen by Tanker Shipping and Trade (see above), at a recent meeting between the representatives of the owner and the representatives of the holders of the fraudulent mortgage, the latter seem unconcerned about the due process of law.
They admitted that they did not have a valid claim, but that was of no consequence:
“…they controlled the local police and judiciary and that the vessel would not be released by conventional means and that they would cut up the ship where she lay and obtain US$5M as scrap value,” reported Mr Algawashi in the letter.
The letter is copied to various Bulgarian authorities, including the Bulgarian Ambassador to London, the Bulgarian First Secretary for Justice and Home Affairs, and the Chairman of the Board of the Bulgarian Chamber of Shipping, among others.