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FMC Announces Compromise Agreements

November 2, 1999

FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION

FMC ANNOUNCES COMPROMISE AGREEMENTS

Washington, D.C. 20573

NR 99-13

 

CONTACT VERN W. HILL, DIRECTOR
BUREAU OF ENFORCEMENT AT (202) 523-5783

FOR RELEASE: November 2, 1999

The Federal Maritime Commission today announced nine compromise agreements recovering civil penalties in an aggregate amount of $822,500. The agreements were entered into with a variety of transportation entities operating in the Transpacific, South American and European trades. The compromise agreements are:

Air Tiger Express (U.S.A.), Inc. Air Tiger Express (U.S.A.), Inc. ("Air Tiger") is a NVOCC located in Jamaica, New York operating in the U.S. foreign commerce, including the Transpacific trades. It was alleged that Air Tiger, acting as destination agent, violated section 10 (a)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by participating in transportation arrangements involving commodity and measurement misdescriptions to enable its NVOCC principal to obtain transportation for cargo for less than otherwise applicable rates and charges, and coloaded shipments in violation of conference service contracts. In compromise of these allegations, Air Tiger paid the sum of $95,000.

Amerilines-USA, Inc., Amerilines, Inc.-NY, and Latin American Forwarding Company. Amerilines-USA, Inc. and Latin American Forwarding Company ("LAFCO") are NVOCCs located in Miami, FL operating in the US - South America trades. Amerilines, Inc.-NY is an ocean freight forwarder located in New York. The Commission alleged that Amerilines-USA and LAFCO violated sections 10 (a)(1) and 10 (b)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions from ocean common carriers and by engaging in service contract misuse and that they charged rates other than those set forth in their respective tariffs for providing transportation services. It was also alleged that Amerilines-NY violated section 19 (d)(4) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by receiving forwarder compensation from common carriers with respect to shipments in which the forwarder had a beneficial interest. Under the terms of the compromise, these companies paid the amount of $100,000.

AMR Shipping Limited. AMR Shipping Limited ("AMR") is a non-vessel-operating common carrier located in New York, NY operating in the US trades including the US - South America trades. It was alleged that AMR violated sections 10 (a)(1) and 10 (b)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions, and by providing transportation services at rates other than those set forth in its tariffs. In compromise of these allegations, AMR paid the amount of $140,000.

Charter Container Line, RCL Agencies, Inc. and Container Transport Inc. Charter Container Line ("Charter") is a non-vessel-operating common carrier based in Clifton, NJ, operating in the European trades. RCL Agencies, Inc. ("RCL") also is located in Clifton, NJ and Container Transport Inc. ("CTI") located at Carteret, NJ. It was alleged that Charter, RCL and CTI violated section 10 (a)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation for Charter's shipments at less than the applicable rates and charges. In addition, it was alleged that RCL violated sections 8 and 23 of the Shipping Act by holding itself out as a NVOCC without a tariff and bond, and that RCL violated section 19 of the Shipping Act by performing freight forwarding services without an ocean freight forwarder license. Pursuant to the compromise, these companies paid the amount of $30,000.

Giorgio Gori, SRL. Giorgio Gori, SRL ("Gori") is a NVOCC with headquarters in Livorno, Italy operating in the U.S. foreign trades including the South American trades. It was alleged that Gori violated section 10 (a)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions. In compromise of these allegations, Gori paid the sum of $37,500.

Hecny Transportation, Inc. and Hecny South America, Limited. Hecny Transportation, Inc. ("Hecny") is an ocean transportation intermediary headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, operating as both an NVOCC and licensed ocean freight forwarder in the U.S. foreign trades, including the Transpacific and South America trades, with affiliates located at various domestic and foreign locations. It was alleged that Hecny and its affiliate Hecny South America, Limited, violated sections 8, 10 (a)(1), 10 (b)(1), 19 (d)(4) and 23 of the Shipping Act of 1984 by operating in certain trades without a tariff on file and in effect, by obtaining transportation of property for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions and by engaging in service contract misuse, and by charging rates for transportation services provided at rates other than those set forth in applicable tariffs. It was further alleged that Hecny received forwarder compensation from common carriers with respect to shipments in which the forwarder had a beneficial interest, and provided transportation as a NVOCC without having a bond or other proof of financial responsibility in effect. Under the terms of the compromise, Hecny paid the sum of $230,000.

International Ocean Consolidators Corp., Ayma Cargo Corp. and IOCC Corp. International Ocean Consolidators Corp., Ayma Cargo Corp. and IOCC Corp. (collectively "IOC") are affiliated companies located in Miami, FL operating as ocean transportation intermediaries in the U.S. foreign trades, including the US - South America trades. It was alleged that IOC violated sections 10 (a)(1) and 10 (b)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation of property for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions and by engaging in misdeclaration and service contract misuse, and by charging rates for transportation services provided at other than those set forth in applicable tariffs. In compromise of these allegations, IOC paid the amount of $50,000.

Pacific-Trans, Inc. Pacific-Trans, Inc. is a non-vessel operating common carrier located in Miami, FL operating in the US - South America trades. It was alleged that Pacific-Trans, Inc. violated section 10 (a)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation of property for less than applicable rates and charges by receiving rebates and other rate concessions. Under the terms of the compromise, Pacific-Trans, Inc. paid the sum of $45,000.

Scanwell Container Line, Ltd. Scanwell Container Line, Ltd. ("Scanwell") is a NVOCC based in Hong Kong. Scanwell operates in the U.S. foreign commerce, including the trades between the U.S. and the Far East. It was alleged that Scanwell violated section 10 (a)(1) of the Shipping Act of 1984 by obtaining transportation at less than the applicable rates and charges by means of commodity misdescriptions, misdeclarations of measurements and by other unjust and unfair devices. In compromise of these allegations, Scanwell paid the sum of $95,000.

In concluding these compromises, these entities did not admit any violations of the Shipping Act of 1984. The compromise agreements resulted from investigations conducted by Area Representatives of the Bureau of Enforcement located in Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Seattle and Washington, DC. Staff attorneys with the Bureau of Enforcement negotiated the compromise agreements.