Two officers and manager of vessel in court on drug trafficking charges

The captain, 2nd officer and manager of general cargo ship Throne (IMO 9148491) appeared in the Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago Magistrates’ Virtual Court on May 15th, charged with possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking.

The case was adjourned until May 29th.

On April 29th an intelligence-led exercise was conducted by the Special Investigations Unit of Trinidad & Tobago. They boarded the Throne and during a thorough search, allegedly found 475.9kg of cocaine.

SIU officers arrested the captain of the vessel, as well as the 18 crew members all of whom are foreign nationals.

On May 12th Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Roger Gaspard decided that three people be charged jointly with trafficking in dangerous drugs:

  1. Captain of the vessel, Shaikh Arif Noor Mohammed age 31, of, 15 Madhubhal Mill Compound Gujarati, India;
  2. Second officer of the vessel, Chandan Kumar Singh, age 25, of Abgila Patna Binar, India; and
  3. Manager of the vessel, Behzat Tokgoz, age 42, of, Ankara, Turkey.

The DPP also advised that the vessel was to be seized as an exhibit and be subject to forfeiture as an instrument in the crime. The court will look to order a disposal via sale, with the funds generated being deposited into an interest bearing account pending the outcome of the charges.

1997-built, Palau-flagged, 4,276 gt Throne is owned by Tuna Holding Inc of Istanbul, Turkey. It is managed by Stark Shipping Co of Istanbul, Turkey.