LeGran.TT prevented the detention of the two vessels and the seizure of ship stores at Odessa seaport

Law firm LeGran.TT prevented unjustified detention of two Ukrainian ships, which were accused in non-declaration of goods on board at the Odessa Commercial Sea Port.
As it turned out, on  February 4, 2016 the vessels left the customs territory of Ukraine. During the customs clearance the stock of paint and engine oil designed for maintenance of vessels were on board. Precise data on the quantity of paint and oil were made to the Ship’s Stores Declaration and filed to Odessa customs in accordance with the law.
As the stock was not large enough to maintain the operations, the shipowner decided to buy more paint and oil in neutral waters.
The next day, 5 February, the vessels returned to the Odessa seaport. With the passage of customs control of the captains were re-filed Ship’s Stores Declaration, taking into account the increased number of paint and oil.
However, Odessa customs inspectors stated that since the amount of paint and oil on board changed upon the return, these supplies were undeclared goods. Thus, supervisory authorities have undertaken to compile reports on the violation of customs rules in respect of the masters under the art. 472 of the Customs Code of Ukraine – non-declaration of the goods, vehicles of commercial use. Sanction of this Article provides for a penalty of 100% of the value of the goods with mandatory confiscation.
At the same time, in accordance with the art. 511 of the Customs Code of Ukraine, Customs are obliged to seize the objects of violation of customs rules prior to a court ruling on the case. However, since in practice customs do not have special tools and equipment and actually cannot provide a seizure of the goods, in such cases, the ship is prohibited to leave port water area until the situation is resolved.
After intensive negotiations between the senior executives of the Odessa customs office and lawyers of LeGran.TT, the parties managed to reach a compromise and ensure the pre-trial settlement of the conflict. The supervisory authorities considered drawing up a protocol impractical, and the vessels successfully completed the customs clearance procedure.
“It is pleasant to note that the new team of Odessa Customs takes into account the interests of the business, which is very difficult to work in today’s reality, and I hope, pre-trial settlement of such disputes will soon become a common practice in the maritime industry.”, – Tatyana Titarenko LeGran.TT, the CEO, commented on the results of the negotiations.