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Old 22-02-2010, 15:17   #76
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Originally Posted by Skipper519 View Post
For reference see 4th Amendment U.S. Constitution and subsequent legal interpretations. Yes, might makes right and I would not interfere with the USCG. However, we are a nation of laws that even the federal government has to adhere to and if the search was ruled illegal any evidence obtained subsequent to said search could be ruled inadmissible.
Oh well, Dang!

Your interpretation of the law doesn't seem to fit the reality of my 22 year experience as a liveaboard! Twelve of those years were in the SF bay of California, where, you may have noticed, they revel in personal freedoms.
Boats seem to be exempt from provisions of the 4th admendment.

I think, but am not 100% sure, that this issue has been tested in courts. It had to do with marina owners going aboard boats in their marinas. Yes, they have that right.

Rather than just exchanging rants for its entertanment value, lets first decide if a boat is a domicile, in a court of law.
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Old 22-02-2010, 15:22   #77
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With so many sea lawyers there should be a bunch of people willing to go down to FL, anchor, and wait for their chance to fight the system there.

Me I'm waiting for a blog entry on what the outcome is/was.
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Old 22-02-2010, 15:44   #78
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There seems to be a lot of people saying anyone can board your vessel anytime. I understand this particular case involves an American citizen, but I don't believe state or local law enforcement have any right to board a foreign flagged vessel. As a matter of fact, I recall a Canadian in one of these threads saying he prevented US Marshals from boarding his boat as they had no authority to do so.

This is not to say the the Navy or USCG can't board foreign vessels- which is part or their mandate.
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Old 22-02-2010, 17:09   #79
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Most Boats are treated the same as Motor Vehicles in State Waters. A Police Office or Peace officer in the performance of his duties is only allowed to board and search if he believes a felon or misdemeanor is being committed in his presents. Generally they will ask to board. They need to be invited. Covered under the Constitution - Search & Seizure.

There is a full full explanation of Florida Anchoring Laws to date on another Cruising Forum - Boaters are following the situation and fighting the injustice. Just Google it.

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Old 22-02-2010, 17:36   #80
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Oh well, Dang!



I think, but am not 100% sure, that this issue has been tested in courts. It had to do with marina owners going aboard boats in their marinas. Yes, they have that right.

Rather than just exchanging rants for its entertanment value, lets first decide if a boat is a domicile, in a court of law.

The circumstances of the marina owners boarding boats without authority would have be specified to determine if this violates the 4th amendment.
Whether a boat is a domicile is irrelevant to the 4th amendment. To quote:
"Amendment IV The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Does this really need an in depth legal analysis to understand the general principle?
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Old 22-02-2010, 18:11   #81
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Good luck on this one!! I'd suggest you present facts to support your claim.
Maybe we should ban together and take this one to the Supreme Court.
The USGC can board any US flaged vessel anywhere in the world, for any reason.
John,

I've yet to see you present a fact, link, law, court case or precedent that says law enforcement of any kind can board or search a boat at any time, or that a boat cannot be classified as a domecile.

In my original question about unlawful search and siezure, I specifically exempted the USCG from the question.

Is there some reason why a boat cannot not legally qualify as a domecile? LEO's trample on people's rights all the time without knowing the law themselves. This automatically means that they're right? Suit yourself, run away, until there's nowhere left to run.

I'm not saying that I'm right, but I'd love to see some documentation, either way.
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Old 22-02-2010, 20:00   #82
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Some statements here are outrageous, like USCG allowed to board US flagged boat anywhere in the world. That is just nonsense. When a US flagged boat is in the territorial waters of another nation, it may only be boarded by USCG when the US government gets permission to do so from that nation. Also, they need permission to enter the territorial waters.

We are Dutch and when our passports are swiped at those immigration computer terminals, the screen shows that our address is aboard s/v Jedi, so at least for Dutch citizens, their boat can be their domicile.

Foreign flagged boats in US waters need a federal cruising permit, which is free. This exempts them from any state laws, duties & taxes. I allows them to stay anywhere in US waters for one year without paying anything to any state.

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 22-02-2010, 20:00   #83
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Originally Posted by Skipper519 View Post
The circumstances of the marina owners boarding boats without authority would have be specified to determine if this violates the 4th amendment.
Whether a boat is a domicile is irrelevant to the 4th amendment. To quote:
"Amendment IV The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Does this really need an in depth legal analysis to understand the general principle?
I have read a bunch of these threads over the past few years and the consensus after someone that really knows is that only the CG can board. Others may not without probable cause and or permission. If you give permission then the camels nose is under the tent. They need to state their probable cause I would think.

But I have not "been there".

Only planning and wishing like most here.
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Old 22-02-2010, 20:46   #84
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Maryland DNR can board your vessel on the water or at your dock.

Failure to permit boarding is a $500.00 fine.

They don't need probable cause as they are enforcing boating laws for compliance.

They could stop you if you had some "rail meat" with their legs hanging over the side.

http://www.dnr.state.md.us/boating/p...ionvessels.pdf
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Old 22-02-2010, 21:03   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Some statements here are outrageous, like USCG allowed to board US flagged boat anywhere in the world. That is just nonsense. When a US flagged boat is in the territorial waters of another nation, it may only be boarded by USCG when the US government gets permission to do so from that nation. Also, they need permission to enter the territorial waters.

We are Dutch and when our passports are swiped at those immigration computer terminals, the screen shows that our address is aboard s/v Jedi, so at least for Dutch citizens, their boat can be their domicile.

Foreign flagged boats in US waters need a federal cruising permit, which is free. This exempts them from any state laws, duties & taxes. I allows them to stay anywhere in US waters for one year without paying anything to any state.

cheers,
Nick.
I was boarded in International waters by the USGC! That sir, is a fact.
Richard Spindler the owner of Latitude38 was boarded by the USCG south of Cuba. That sir, is a fact.

All countries will allow the USCG to conduct drug enforcement in their waters. That includes search for cause, with no prior paperwork.

As a liveaboard for 22 years, I've seen banks and marinas place a chain acrossed the stearn of a boat before the paperwork for reposesion was started. That sir I have witnessed.

If a law enforcement person thinks there is cause to search a boat, they will do so, without paperwork. If a person next to your boat is pissed with you they can suggest to an official that your boat should be searched, and it will be. That sir I have witnessed.

If your boat fits a "profile" it will be searched sans paperwork. That sir I have witnessed.

If you think a free federal cruising permit will excempt you from state law, You sir are in for a rude awaking.

Every municipality on the ICW has laws on the books that allow officials to board your boat to insure that you're not letting black water discharge into their water, no prior paperwork required.

Is it right or just? As a person who grew up in Idaho and voted for Goldwater, I say hell no.

But as a cruisier I try to stay below the radar.

US Immigration will give you a tourist visa the length of which is equal to the length of stay given to US citizens in your country. That sir is fact. A good cruising friend, while in the US had to fly is wife back to Brazil, so she could return and renew her visia.

sorry for the tone of this post.

Regards John
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Old 22-02-2010, 21:43   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Some statements here are outrageous, like USCG allowed to board US flagged boat anywhere in the world. That is just nonsense. When a US flagged boat is in the territorial waters of another nation, it may only be boarded by USCG when the US government gets permission to do so from that nation. Also, they need permission to enter the territorial waters.

We are Dutch and when our passports are swiped at those immigration computer terminals, the screen shows that our address is aboard s/v Jedi, so at least for Dutch citizens, their boat can be their domicile.

Foreign flagged boats in US waters need a federal cruising permit, which is free. This exempts them from any state laws, duties & taxes. I allows them to stay anywhere in US waters for one year without paying anything to any state.

cheers,
Nick.
The US has agreements with several countries and all NATO members to allow just that. A boat in the US isn't given the same legal protections as a house.
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Old 22-02-2010, 22:46   #87
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Jedi,
As a foreign flagged vessel in the US, you are required by the US Dept. of Homeland Security to notifiy the US Customs whenever you move your boat. Even if it's less than 1000 feet!

As a 64 foot foreign flagged boat you'd better notified US Customs before you enter US waters.

Enforcement is, at this time, rather casual but don't push you luck.

John
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Old 22-02-2010, 23:08   #88
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@John: I wrote territorial waters, not International waters; I should have written tax/import laws because that is what I meant; no, it's relatively just a few countries that have such an agreement with the US, most countries have their own navy well equipped so that they don't need the USCG help; black water discharge: everyone must obey these laws but foreign flagged boats don't need that silly lock on the valve when that isn't required in their country of registration; tourist visa: the immigration official has some level of authority to decide length of visa depending on his/her impression of your visit; when entering by private yacht, you must have the 10-year valid visa in your passport already. The wife could have gone to any country outside US and come back, like Bahama's.

@martini: sure, and when they don't have an agreement like that, they can request permission on a case by case basis; house/boat: I understand that a boat is different than a house in the US, I just wrote that this is different in other countries.

ciao!
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Old 22-02-2010, 23:12   #89
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Jedi,
As a foreign flagged vessel in the US, you are required by the US Dept. of Homeland Security to notifiy the US Customs whenever you move your boat. Even if it's less than 1000 feet!
Yes, even when you move from your slip to the fuel-dock or pump-out and back to the same slip.

Quote:
As a 64 foot foreign flagged boat you'd better notified US Customs before you enter US waters.
I haven't read that the length of the boat is a factor. The only trouble with these ridiculous rules I've heard about are in south FL.

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Old 23-02-2010, 00:37   #90
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US vessels are subject to boarding any where they are in the world. Even tied to a dock in another country. I don't like it, but thats the way it is.
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