Three Sea Shepherd backed anti-whaling Eco-terrorists being held on a Japanese ship after deliberately trespassing will be transferred to Australian custody according to Japan’s Kyodo news.
Criminal charges will not be laid against the three men because they did not cause injury to crew members of the Shonan Maru No 2 or to the body of the ship.
The three Eco-terrorists, Geoffery Tuxworth, Simon Peterffy and Glen Pendlebury, are from the unknown environmental group Forest Rescue and boarded the Shonan Maru No 2 on Saturday night when it was roughly 40 kilometres off the south-west Australian coast.
The Shonan Maru No 2 is a Japanese surveillance vessel which had been tailing Sea Shepherd’s ship the Steve Irwin.
Federal Attorney-General Nicola Roxon earlier said Australia had limited legal avenues to pursue the release of the men because they had boarded the ship while it was outside Australian territorial waters.
“The legal options are quite limited when this occurs outside Australian territory and outside territorial waters, we can’t simply enforce our will upon a boat which is flagged to another nation,” she said.
“The clear advice I have to date is that because it was only in our exclusive economic zone, that doesn’t give us automatic rights to assert Australian law.
“In fact, the clearest advice that we have is that Japanese law would be likely to apply.”