12 Sep 2012

Phocea to be brought closer to shore in Vanuatu capital's harbour

3:12 pm on 12 September 2012

The prosecution in Vanuatu has got court authorisation to move the super yacht Phocea closer to the Port Vila shore.

It is a precaution after some of those who'd been on board the yacht had fled Vanuatu.

Police raided the vessel nearly two months ago and have been holding it and most of its crew on a variety of charges including customs offences.

When Police, Customs and Immigration boarded the yacht on the 22nd of July, they had tried to move it from Paradise Cove Bay to the main wharf, but the skipper, Richard Malaise, dropped the anchor near the main entrance to Port Vila harbour.

Mr Malaise is to face court next week over the illegal boarding of Phocea by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alfred Carlot, the Minister of Education, Marcelino Pepite, and Mr Carlot's private secretary, Matai Kalwatman.