Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 03-04-2013, 05:23   #151
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Cruising NC, FL, Bahamas, TCI & VIs
Boat: 1964 Pearson Ariel 'Faith' / Pearson 424, sv Emerald Tide
Posts: 1,531
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Received in my email, posted with permission;

Quote:
Originally Posted by ABC View Post
I intended for all to see our response. Its been a few years since I have been active on this forum. Sorry about that can you please forward our message to the main notice board we would be most grateful.
Thanks Ian

Quote:
Good Day Mr .Lloyd,
In receiving your communication I am very distressed and sorry for any negative implications BASRA is receiving due to me wearing one of your tee shirts over my work shirt on a cold day. These persons on the vessel "3 Sheets" are making VERY untrue slanderous allegations.
They lied to The Bahamas Government Officials on this matter, they lied to the US Embassy on this matter (Alleging to be aground in Bimini whilst tied up at Bayshore Marina Nassau) and now they lie to the members of the Cruisers Forum. All in a promised effort to slander our company name for the inconvenience they mistakenly perceive we caused them.
At the request of the denied tow boat Richard L. Barker & Captain Adrian Baker we offered our services to the persons onboard "3 Sheets" but discussed no amount of money what so ever. We never got that far with them as they said it was in the hands of their Insurance Company and they could not proceed without their approval. So I have no idea how they can accuse us of attempted extortion.
We never called their insurance company how in the world would we know who that is. They called us, as well as TOW BOAT US Ft Lauderdale, because we gave the tow boat Captain Adrian Baker our contacts and our promise to assist in any way we can, which we attempted to do legally. (Sorry if they consider the legal way of doing things the wrong way.)
We were directed by the tow boat Captain to talk to the vessel owners regarding assisting them (how else would we know what vessel they came to assist0 and met the persons on board 3 sheets, had a very cordial conversation with the gentelman on board but the Lady appeared to be extremely emotional possibly linked to the drinks being passed about at the time, then left on what we thought were good terms.
We identified ourselves CLEARLY that we were from ABC Yacht Services Nassau Bahamas and never even remotely indicated we were there on behalf of BASRA other than me having a long sleeve BASRA polo on that day over my ABC polo because it was a little chilly that day.
I will reserve my personal opinion of these people right now and only add that if they continue to commit public slander we shall have no other recourse than to prosecute as all this has been documented by not only the Bahamas Government But also by the US Embassy yes Federal Government Officials who were also lied to. Hmmm last I checked that is punishable with imprisonment.
These folks ought to be thankful for our attempts to help them and stop being so vicious with their attacks against the good people of the Bahamas who might I add legally tried to assist them.
One final note regarding the exorbitant rates they accuse us of is so ridiculous we offer rates thousands of dollars less than what that tow boat operator was prepaid to do illegally. Have a look at their website ( TOWBOAT US FT LAUDERDALE, Long Distance Towing) they openly advertise their illegal activities in the Bahamas and list the hundreds of thousands worth of illegal Salvage they have taken from legally operating Bahamian Companies and the Bahamaian people since 2002 I counted 24 Salvage jobs if they had no permits every one of them was illegal. How can these people dare accuse us of extortion or any kind of illegal activity.
Again we do humbly apologize for wearing one of you polo shirts during the conduct of our business and we shall make every effort not to let that mistake happen again (all those cruisers on that forum should buy one they really warm and support an excellent cause we do)

Yours sincerely,
Captain Ian Gilbert
ABC Yacht Services Nassau Bahamas
__________________

__________________
s/v 'Faith' is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 05:30   #152
Freelance Delivery Skipper..
 
boatman61's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK/Portugal
Posts: 20,199
Images: 2
Send a message via Skype™ to boatman61
pirate Re: Extortion in Nassau

__________________


Born To Be Wild
boatman61 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 05:32   #153
Armchair Bucketeer
 
David_Old_Jersey's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 10,013
Images: 4
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
David,

While the USA has a very strong Jones Act… I could still, with foreign registered tugs, pick up tows in the USA for International voyages as it is in compliance with International Agreements.
I wasn't referring specifically to a like for like towing job - just the principal of foreigners turning up and undertaking business with no formalities involved (whether in US or elsewhere).

But nonetheless, for boat specific stuff I would be very surprised if any foreigner could turn up in a US port and do as they wanted (whether or not involving work!) without any US officialdom / paperwork being involved simply because they were on a tug boat. My reading of the Bahamas situation is that the US tow company could have legally taken the tow, they just never completed the paperwork to do so (never bothered? / never thought of? ).

Whether it would have been commercially viable for them to do so is a seperate matter!
David_Old_Jersey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 05:34   #154
Armchair Bucketeer
 
David_Old_Jersey's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 10,013
Images: 4
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
Nothing here rose to the level of "extortion".
and certainly nothing that IME even comes to "3rd world" extortion as nothing and no one set on fire and OP never mentioned anyone missing body parts. etc . That probably because Bahamas not 3rd world. I will admit that no first hand experiance of the Carribean - only SEA, so I will concede that extortion might be a lot more freindlier in those parts than I was used to.

Locals simply not willing to be a pushover not quite the same as Extortion. Turning up somewhere as foreigner does not automatically give yer a free pass or a warm welcome - often enough you get treated same as a local, plusses and minuses to that but essentially same as at "home", the clueless get to hold the sh#ttier end of the deal / stick. That's simply business and life not "extortion".

Having said that, if dealing with ABC in the future I would likely count my fingers - but I would likely do that anyway (I have trust issues ).
David_Old_Jersey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 06:25   #155
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,574
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomfl View Post
Let me see if I understand your post. First I post part of the BASRA post, the relevant part being this.

"BASRA, like the USCG, got out of non distress towing. It would be unfortunate if Capt. Gilbert represented himself in any way as BASRA (other than just wearing a shirt) and this will be investigated further and dealt with if necessary."

Then I say Gilbert should not be claiming he was officially representing BASRA and I did not think it was a good idea for him to be wearing a BASRA logo shirt.

A lot of folks with English as a first language would think I was on the same page as BASRA, not lecturing them. Could you point out what you think I was lecturing them about.
Yea, I must have misunderstood
Quote:
But I do think BASRA needs to make it clear to its volunteers that wearing items with the BASRA logo carries the responsibility of not diminishing the brand. It certainly seems like this is what Ian Gilbert did.
as telling BASRA how to run their volunteer organization.
__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 06:46   #156
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: On a boat!
Posts: 118
Re: Extortion in Nassau

The Bahamas have virtually no domestic economy beyond tourist money, especially in the less populous areas. They guard their access to it jealously, and the last thing they ever want to see is an American doing business with Americans, especially at a price a fraction of what they would demand.

The ABC guy saw it as poaching a sweet plumb (your bank account) from his back yard, complained to his government and his government stepped in to protect him. If I understand their political process correctly, they probably stood to snag a decent cut of the plumb too for making sure he got it.

Think of marine services over there like ship wreckers. Once you're immobile, they can demand what they want and you can pay or bugger off. That sucks, but it's par for the course in a nation of that stature. Heck, it even happens stateside.

Being able to get out of the country and call for help saved some serious bacon in this case. It's worth thinking about.
__________________
H Romberg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 06:47   #157
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: On a boat!
Posts: 118
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Oh yeah. When you call someone into the Bahamas to tow you next time, don't let anyone know. Just clear off and let them wonder where you went. Whatever you do, don't let em call you on VHF under the Tow Boat US call sign. Cell phones, and night departures and all that.
__________________
H Romberg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 06:55   #158
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,574
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by H Romberg View Post
Oh yeah. When you call someone into the Bahamas to tow you next time, don't let anyone know. Just clear off and let them wonder where you went. Whatever you do, don't let em call you on VHF under the Tow Boat US call sign. Cell phones, and night departures and all that.
And if your boat gets impounded, make sure you come to CrusiersForum and complain of the outrageous, illegal and immoral behavior of the locals.
__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 07:15   #159
Freelance Delivery Skipper..
 
boatman61's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK/Portugal
Posts: 20,199
Images: 2
Send a message via Skype™ to boatman61
pirate Re: Extortion in Nassau

Its much ado about nothing from my viewpoint... most customers think your out to screw them.. even if the bill is way under anyone else's some will still try to wriggle out of it.
From where I am this could easily have been avoided with a more seamanly approach like getting her out of port under power using the dinghy and sailing the few miles to the mainland.. if the entry is tricky on arrival THEN you call out a tow to get you in.
I don't care which country you are in... once the word 'Insurance' enters a negotiation the price near doubles...
In this case I think it was lack of experience on many levels on the owners part.. and attitude just made things worse.
I've walked away from deliveries when the owner starts trying to dictate what I'll be paid and who I can have as crew.. or if I've already been conned so far I can't walk away...
I'll nail them in Court..

__________________


Born To Be Wild
boatman61 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 07:44   #160
Registered User
 
tomfl's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Florida
Boat: Seawind 1000xl
Posts: 1,959
Images: 10
Re: Extortion in Nassau Reply From ABC Yacht Services

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
The plot unfolds and we have heard from all except US Tow.
  • BASRA admits local practices have been fuzzy and work around solutions was common place.
  • ABC Agents admit to being involved, but there agency services do not appear to include helping a tug already hired and having completed 50% of the voyage, to finish the job!
  • Instead, according to Three Sheets, they made sure that local authorities knew they were watching.
In my experience with port officials, they are generally helpful unless someone reminds them not to be.
So in this small community, you have to ask, which agency had that Agenda?
True we have not heard from US Tow, but the same goes for the insurance company and for the marina where Three Sheets was that arranged the short tow to a point where Three Sheets could sail away from the issue.

I have seen conflicting claims that need to be resolved before I can feel comfortable assigning blame.

Gilbert claims the insurance company and US Tow contacted him and he then contacted Three Sheets. Three Sheets left a very different impression, one that Gilbert sorta showed up out of the blue. Even if Gilbert was contacted by the insurance company, US Tow, or both the timing is certainly important. Did this happen before or after Gilbert first contacted Three Sheets. Did Gilbert make it clear he had been contacted by the insurance company and US Tow when meeting with Three Sheets.

Three Sheets has taken the position that their actions were at the behest of the insurance company so it seems strange that if Gilbert was contacted by the insurance company Three Sheets would not go along with what Gilbert said. It simply does not add up.

Speculation at this point is simply that. As DOJ said count your fingers, and I would add do it not just when dealing with tow operators.
__________________
tomfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 07:49   #161
Registered User
 
tomfl's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Florida
Boat: Seawind 1000xl
Posts: 1,959
Images: 10
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Its much ado about nothing from my viewpoint... most customers think your out to screw them.. even if the bill is way under anyone else's some will still try to wriggle out of it.
From where I am this could easily have been avoided with a more seamanly approach like getting her out of port under power using the dinghy and sailing the few miles to the mainland.. if the entry is tricky on arrival THEN you call out a tow to get you in.
I don't care which country you are in... once the word 'Insurance' enters a negotiation the price near doubles...
In this case I think it was lack of experience on many levels on the owners part.. and attitude just made things worse.
I've walked away from deliveries when the owner starts trying to dictate what I'll be paid and who I can have as crew.. or if I've already been conned so far I can't walk away...
I'll nail them in Court..
One point you may have missed is that Three Sheets was following instructions from their insurance company by waiting for US Tow. Once Gilbert got involved and it was clear the advice from their insurance company was not possible to follow their course of action was basically what you suggested.
__________________
tomfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 08:07   #162
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Cruising NC, FL, Bahamas, TCI & VIs
Boat: 1964 Pearson Ariel 'Faith' / Pearson 424, sv Emerald Tide
Posts: 1,531
Thumbs up Re: Extortion in Nassau

These two replies, the first from BASRA, the second from Captain Gilbert might help clear up some of the speculation that has been present in the thread. I know it is a lot of reading, but made these contacts to try to get a broader perspective on what transpired here....

Thanks to BASRA, and Captain Gilbert for taking time to reply to my emails.


[QUOTE=s/v 'Faith';1201085]Reply from BASRA;

The rest of the story.....

Quote:
Dear Mr. Xxxxx, (this was addressed to me)

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. I have read all the posts and many are not even worthy of comment. I think many persons are confusing Mr. Nick Wardle and SEARCH with BASRA. BASRA does not send out literature soliciting donations but only once a year sends out membership renewal notices so that persons can update contact and vessel information.

From our experience, persons who bad mouth BASRA have expected free non distress tows and been declined.

As for the issue at hand….

BASRA’s role in this is nonexistent.

We sell shirts to anybody and whilst we are familiar with Capt. Ian Gilbert and ABC Yacht Services BASRA is a Volunteer Lifesaving Organization and not a commercial towing operation.

Capt. Gilbert is a member of BASRA, a Volunteer Captain and also a Director. He runs ABC Yacht services which provides commercial towing , salvage and vessel maintenance. We see no conflict of interest as BASRA, like the USCG, got out of non distress towing. It would be unfortunate if Capt. Gilbert represented himself in any way as BASRA (other than just wearing a shirt) and this will be investigated further and dealt with if necessary.

The whole Harbour was abuzz when this happened and it is my understanding that the US Towboat cleared with Harbour Control but had no intention of clearing Customs and Immigration, ‘collecting a boat and returning to the US”, until pressed by Harbour Control. In the past, when there was no Commercial Towing service available locally, BASRA has assisted various US towing companies by pulling boats out to the “Pilots Station” approximately 3 miles out of the western harbor entrance. Sea Tow recently sent us a cheque for $800 for assisting with the Sea Ray that was stolen in Abaco by the Barefoot Bandit but ended up in Nassau Hbr. This equates to, $133.00 per mile R/T!!! We always recommend staying at least 3 miles out so as to not upset anybody locally. All the crew on board the US Tow Boat would have needed work permits that need to be applied for, PRIOR to coming to the Bahamas. As for the US Embassy, someone said it correctly that they would “get you a lawyer” when you get locked up for working illegally. It is unfortunate that Three Sheets did not contact BASRA, as we are here to help Cruisers and are a wealth of knowledge, if I do say so myself!

BASRA is aware that over the years (I have been running BASRA for 20 years) tow boats have come into the Bahamas and taken jobs and for the most part a blind eye was turned because if there was no one locally, insured and capable, then it needed to be done. Customs and Immigration are becoming more aware of the number of “cruisers” and “sports fishermen” that are operating charters and such without permits and everybody is on their toes, so to speak.

I hope this helps and we really appreciate your bringing it to our attention.

Kind regards,

Chris Lloyd
Operations Manager, BASRA

From:
Sent: Monday, April 01, 2013 3:27 PM
To: @batelnet.bs
Cc: @basra.org
Subject: Re: BASRA discussion on Cruisers Forum.

Sent on the 29th, resenting today.

Thanks,

Sent from my iPad

On Mar 29, 2013, at 9:25, Xxx. Xcccc<sxxxx @icloud.com> wrote:

Good day,

I am a Sailor who has enjoyed cruising in the Bahamas for many years. I appreciate BASRA, and have made donations in the past.

Sadly, it seems a man tried to charge a large sum for a tow of a vessel in Nassau recently. He apparently represented himself as being affiliated with BASRA. There has been a lengthy discussion of the incident on a discussion forum used by over 10,000 Sailors from around the world.

I hate to see BASRA falsely implicated in this, and wonder if someone representing BASRA might be able to share a comment to clarify the organization's role in this.

The thread is here; Extortion in Nassau You will need to register to post, but if you would prefer just reply to this email and I will gladly share it in the thread.

Thank you, and thank you for your service to us all.

Xxxxx xxxxx
S/V Faith

Sent from my iPad
Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v 'Faith' View Post
Received in my email, posted with permission;
__________________
s/v 'Faith' is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 08:13   #163
Freelance Delivery Skipper..
 
boatman61's Avatar

Community Sponsor
Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: UK/Portugal
Posts: 20,199
Images: 2
Send a message via Skype™ to boatman61
pirate Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomfl View Post
One point you may have missed is that Three Sheets was following instructions from their insurance company by waiting for US Tow. Once Gilbert got involved and it was clear the advice from their insurance company was not possible to follow their course of action was basically what you suggested.
Ok.. so they contacted the insurance company regarding the engine problem... that's fine.. but what you have to remember that a claims clerk in a office 'Stateside' is not exactly qualified for advice on other country's/seamanship.. likely 90% have never set foot on a boat so the last people I look to for advice is the Insurance Company.. all they can offer is a yes or no on the money angle.. and legal aid..
If your up for this approach fine.. just don't gripe about high insurance premiums coz newbies/oldies take the tow boat home...
__________________


Born To Be Wild
boatman61 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 08:58   #164
Registered User
 
CaptainDana's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Patuxent River, MD
Boat: MorganByCatalina OutIslandClassic '41
Posts: 56
'Extortion' (per se) is a matter of law. Those laws are defined by the jurisdiction in which the alleged extortion would have occurred. In the Bahamas, the technical aspect of the definition is provided by the UK legislation. Under S21 of the Theft Act, 1968

an act of extortion/ blackmail is committed if: &hellip;with a view to gain for himself or another or with intent to cause loss to another, he makes any unwarranted demand with menaces; and for this purpose a demand with menace is unwarranted unless the person making it does so in the belief &ndash; (a) That he has reasonable grounds for making the demand; and (b) That the use of the menaces is a proper means of reinforcing the demand. Thus, determining whether an act may lead to extortion/ blackmail will require proof that: (a) A demand with; (b) menaces is made. (c) That the demand was unwarranted; and (d) That at the time of making the demand the individual made it with a view to gain for himself or another or with the intent to cause loss to another.

By using the factors set forth by UK precedent (which is applicable to the laws of The Bahamas), it is possible for one to determine whether they will suffer criminal liability while engaging in a potentially extortive act. By gauging their approach to the execution of their demands, it may be possible to remain within the legal threshold of the law by refraining themselves from committing all of the legal elements listed above during the execution of the act.

The State Department says, "Know before you go!"
__________________
CaptainDana is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-04-2013, 09:00   #165
smj
Registered User

Join Date: Nov 2007
Boat: Searunner 38 catamaran
Posts: 3,654
Re: Extortion in Nassau

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Its much ado about nothing from my viewpoint... most customers think your out to screw them.. even if the bill is way under anyone else's some will still try to wriggle out of it.
From where I am this could easily have been avoided with a more seamanly approach like getting her out of port under power using the dinghy and sailing the few miles to the mainland.. if the entry is tricky on arrival THEN you call out a tow to get you in.
I don't care which country you are in... once the word 'Insurance' enters a negotiation the price near doubles...
In this case I think it was lack of experience on many levels on the owners part.. and attitude just made things worse.
I've walked away from deliveries when the owner starts trying to dictate what I'll be paid and who I can have as crew.. or if I've already been conned so far I can't walk away...
I'll nail them in Court..
I would agree with this. To me the beauty of cruising is the ability to be self sufficient. I also couldn't imagine getting towed across the gulf stream unless it was a life or death situation. The thought sends shivers down me spine.:-)
__________________

__________________
smj is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
nassau

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:19.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.