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Ocean Carriers and Intermediaries Pay $218,750 in Agreed Penalties

August 30, 2010

NR 10-19

Contact: Peter J. King, Director, Bureau of Enforcement (202-523-5783)
Media Contact: Karen V. Gregory, Secretary (202-523-5725)

The Federal Maritime Commission has executed six compromise agreements recovering a total of $218,750 in civil penalties. The agreements were reached with a vessel-operating common carrier and five ocean transportation intermediaries. The agreed penalties resulted from investigations conducted by the Commission's Area Representatives in Houston, Los Angeles, New York, South Florida, and Washington, D.C. Staff attorneys with the Commission's Bureau of Enforcement negotiated the compromise agreements. The parties settled and paid penalties, but did not admit to violations of the Shipping Act or the Commission's regulations. "These penalties reflect the continued vigilance and hard work of the Commission's Area Representatives and Bureau of Enforcement to protect the shipping public," stated Federal Maritime Commission Chairman Richard A. Lidinsky, Jr.

Chairman Lidinsky also noted that two of the penalties followed allegations of misdescribing cargo. "The recent eleven-day fire on the Charlotte Maersk is a reminder that misdescription of cargo is not just unfair and deceptive – it poses a serious safety and security risk. The Commission will act vigorously to detect and punish this threat to safety and the shipping public."

The compromise agreements are:

Network Shipping Ltd.: Network Shipping is a vessel-operating common carrier based in Coral Gables, Florida. Commission staff alleged that Network Shipping violated section 10(a)(2) of the Shipping Act by transporting empty refrigerated containers to Ecuador under an agreement that was not filed with the Commission. Commission staff further alleged that Network Shipping provided liner transportation that was not in accordance with the rates and charges set forth in Network Shipping's published tariff in the northbound trades from Ecuador. Network Shipping paid the Commission $100,000 in compromise of these allegations.

JAK Holding Inc.: JAK Holding Inc., doing business as Speedier Logistics, is a licensed and bonded non-vessel-operating common carrier (NVOCC) and freight forwarder based in Jamaica, New York. Commission staff alleged that JAK Holding violated section 10(a)(1) of the Shipping Act by misdescribing the commodities they shipped, and improperly accessing service contracts to which they were not a signatory or affiliate, in order to obtain transportation services at less than applicable rates and charges. JAK also allegedly violated section 10(b)(2)(A) of the Shipping Act by providing ocean transportation services other than at the rates or charges provided in its NVOCC tariff. JAK Holding paid the Commission $33,750 in compromise of these allegations.

Perfect Logistics, Inc.: Perfect Logistics is a licensed and bonded NVOCC located in Torrance, California. Commission staff alleged that Perfect Logistics violated section 10(a)(1) of the Shipping Act by misdescribing the commodities they shipped, and by unlawfully accessing service contracts to which they were not a signatory or affiliate, in order to obtain transportation services at less than applicable rates and charges. Perfect Logistics also allegedly violated section 10(b)(2)(A) of the Shipping Act by providing ocean transportation services at other than the rates or charges provided in its published tariffs. In compromise of these allegations, Perfect Logistics paid $30,000.

J & S Universal Services Inc. and Ocean Cargo Logistics Group LLC.: J & S Universal, doing business as Patrick & Rosenfeld Shipping, and Ocean Cargo Logistics Group, LLC are based in Miami Florida. J & S Universal and Ocean Cargo allegedly violated sections 8, 19(a) and 19(b) of the Shipping Act by acting as a NVOCC without obtaining a license as an ocean transportation intermediary from the Commission, without providing the Commission evidence of a bond, insurance, or other form of security, and without publishing an electronic tariff. In addition, Commission staff alleged that J & S Universal and Ocean Cargo violated section 10(a)(1) of the Shipping Act by obtaining transportation services at less than applicable rates and charges by unlawfully accessing service contracts to which they were not a signatory or affiliate. Ocean Cargo also agreed to seek a Commission license to operate as an ocean transportation intermediary at the earliest possible time. In compromise of these allegations, J & S Universal and Ocean Cargo paid the Commission $25,000.

Awilda Shipping Inc.: Awilda Shipping Inc. is based in Corona, New York. Awilda Shipping allegedly violated sections 8, 19(a) and 19(b) of the Shipping Act by acting as a NVOCC without obtaining a license as an ocean transportation intermediary, without providing the Commission evidence of a bond, insurance, or other form of security, and without publishing an electronic tariff. Awilda Shipping also agreed to seek licensed ocean transportation intermediary status at the earliest possible time. Under the terms of the compromise, Awilda Shipping paid $15,000.

Sifax Shipping Company LLC: Sifax Shipping is based in Houston, Texas. Sifax Shipping allegedly acted as an ocean transportation intermediary without obtaining a license from the Commission, and without providing the Commission evidence of a freight forwarder bond, in violation of Sections 19(a) and (b) of the Shipping Act. Sifax Shipping paid $15,000 in compromise of these allegations.