Shipping company fails in claim for €95,000 against arrested vessel

An Estonian shipping company has failed in an Irish High Court claim for breach of contract in relation to a ship which was arrested when it came into Irish jurisdiction over the alleged non-payment of €95,000 for services allegedly provided for the vessel, reports Irish Examiner.

Atlas Baltic sued the owners and all persons claiming an interest in the MV Lady Magda (IMO 9054963, 1993-built, 2,561 gt, now renamed Atlas and Norway-flagged), which at the time was registered in and sailed under the flag of the Netherlands. It was arrested in Irish waters in July 2017 and the owners later put up security for its release.

It was subsequently sold, renamed and reflagged.

Atlas said that it entered into a series of contracts to provide services at the request of a Finnish company called Dennis Maritime (DM) and that the services were provided to the owners of Lady Magda. DM has since gone into liquidation. The owners maintained they had no liability to pay Atlas, which said it raised 17 invoices for these services, all addressed to DM.

Mr Justice Brian McGovern dismissed the Atlas claim, saying he was satisfied the claim was based on a breach of contract and the defendant ship owners were never a party to that contract.

He said that the defendant had no liability for the €95,381 claim and therefore neither the vessel nor the security provided after its arrest can be condemned in respect of that claim.