Monjasa is the defendant in a bitter dispute about 10,000 tonnes of oil. Swedish company goes on after defeat in the high court.
It all began in a friendly and fordragelig tone seven years ago in the waters of Sao Tomé and Principe, a small west african island nation.
“Good morning, sir!”
Kystvagtens patrol boat was sailed out of contact with the tanker “Duzgit Integrity” and called up over the radio. The ship’s captain told that its cargo had to be transferred to another tanker, “Marida Melissa”.
After a “thank you” and “good job”, there came once again a “good morning, sir” on the VHF radio.
Only two hours later changed as a result of unclear reasons perception of the situation. The two captains were taken ashore and questioned, and the ships and cargo were detained.
Radiokorrespondancen and other details provided in a Danish judgment and of the decisions of The Permanent court of Arbitration in the Hague, determines conflicts between states.
In an email asked the shipowner, the authorities in Sao Tomé and Principe on a quick solution. There may be a misunderstanding. The transfer of the cargo was like to move something from the right to the left pocket, he wrote.
But østatens courts stated that there was talk of smuggling. The ships had been in the state’s territorial waters without permission. The captains were sentenced to imprisonment for three years. The fine was five million euro, the customs duty amounted to one million euro – and even the Danish state took over the valuable cargo.
The two tankers were chartered by the Swedish Stena Oil, which also owned the cargo. In October of the same year called the company’s vice president to a commander in the Danish company Monjasa, which has its headquarters at frederica. He was furious. “What the hell are you doing?” But the dane was, according to the Swedish ice-cold.
Monjasa, which, like Stena Oil selling fuel to the shipping industry, was about to score a win. The Danish company had of Sao Tomé bought the oil at the “Duzgit Integrity” for cheap.
Stena Oils the vice president promised back in October 2013 in the phone call to the Danish director, Stena Oil would come after Monjasa, regardless of how long it would take, and no matter how much it would cost.
Seven years later, live controversy still. In march ruled the Vestre Landsret judgment to Monjasas advantage. But Stena Oil has now appealed to the Supreme court.
In the court of appeal has the swedes claimed that they lost the load because of the “state-practised piracy”. Østatens judgments and confiscation was absurd, and in fact was Stena Oil and shipping companies exposed to blackmail. Monjasa was in bad faith, and the deal is therefore illegitimate, it has sounded.
Both the united nations declaration on human rights and the african charter on human rights was violated, said the statement.
the Deal was realized at the end of October 2013. Armed soldiers from the coast guard was on board the “Duzgit Integrity”, as one of the Monjasas tankers finally arrived to take over the load for a total of approximately 10,000 tonnes.
A company in the Monjasa group paid Sao Tomé three million u.s. dollars. Then the fuel is resold to another company in the group.
the Profits was “significant”, has a former employee in Monjasa told the high court. Another has estimated that the market price was twice the amount of the purchase price.
As a had entered into an agreement with the Danish company, were the two captains in addition released.
During the proceedings in the Vestre Landsret has Monjasa among other things, said that there is evidence that Sao Tomé confiscation in violation of international law. Danish courts must not assess the legality of a sovereign state’s exercise of power. And incidentally, the oil would have been acquired by another buyer, where the Monjasa had not turned to.
In the Hague, The Permanent court of Arbitration judged that the Sao Tomé sanctions were disproportionate and unreasonable. But the decision can, according to the judges in the high court in Viborg does not justify that Monjasa had to be responsible for the loss, as Stena Oil led to lose its oil.
Two experts before the high court expounded østatens law rules. And the judges conclude that the Sao Tomé authorities legally had taken over the oil and was, therefore, entitled to sell at Monjasa.
But now the legal battle then continue in front of the other judges. When the Supreme court takes the position, remains to be seen.