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Anti-whaling activists found in contempt of court in U.S.

49 Comments
By PAUL ELIAS

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49 Comments
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This is an excellent ruling by the 9th court.

This and the recent grand jury rulings show and prove that the American Justice system is the best in the world.

3 ( +25 / -23 )

A good ruling, however don't get the mindset that the American Justice System is the best in the world. They make plenty of bad rulings.

7 ( +18 / -11 )

Since when are terrorists being allowed to consider legal options?! Throw Eco terrier Watson into jail where he belongs! This guy is a nut job!

12 ( +27 / -15 )

Good job and justice is served, now lock em all up if they do not pay the damages and lawyers bills.

13 ( +23 / -11 )

Clearly this ruling was influenced by anything other than concern for the plight of the whales. I support SS and Mr. Watson for whatever they do to prevent this slaughter of valuable sea-roaming mammals. Leave the whales alone! Go SS!

-13 ( +14 / -26 )

this terrorist will pay for his sins.....

5 ( +14 / -9 )

Good to hear.

Considering that the SS is harping on how Japan must uphold the law and rules. Many posters here and online they get an exception because of their love for an animal or other. News, the law applies to everyone equally.

Countdown till we hear how Japan bribed/influenced the court in the USA.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

It'S ME, In case you don't know, Japan is abiding by the law and rules on whales hunt. Only English news are depicting it as if not.

-4 ( +12 / -16 )

Clearly this ruling was influenced by anything other than concern for the plight of the whales.

Indeed. The thing that influences all of this is called "the law". These people can't take the law into their own hands and damage Japanese ships/risk the lives of their crew because they disagree with whaling.

13 ( +19 / -6 )

I support SS and Mr. Watson for whatever they do

So you believe everyone should only follow the laws they like?

7 ( +16 / -9 )

I think the focus should be on whether Japan is really following the rules for whaling in international waters. What I mean is that quotas are set for scientific study. I find it hard to believe it though that all this whaling they do is truly for scientific purposes. Especially when you can find whale on the menu in sushi restaurants. Now, I am all in favor for applying the law but I am questioning whether Japan is 'exploiting' the scientific studies' quotas for other purposes. So I think the real criminal act here is committed by whomever is in charge of making sure that whaling quotas are truly used for scientific purposes. Unfortunately, the dynamics of international organizations are so complex and influenced by lobbies that it is not really a surprise that no authority is currently questioning the usage of quotas. So we, the powerless people, are here arguing whether a poor animal-lover activist whom is breaking the law for the love of animals should pay back equally poor Japanese fishermen to refund them of damage an legal expenses. It looks like the war of the poor people while the powerful authorities in the international organizations (that should prevent this from happening by being vigilant) are probably having an expensive lunch in Brussels at our expenses. So sad.

-10 ( +6 / -16 )

Especially when you can find whale on the menu in sushi restaurants. Now, I am all in favor for applying the law

Well the law that allows research whaling also REQUIRES the whale be processed.

a poor animal-lover activist

Watson isn't poor. He gets pay a 6 figure salary.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers were found in contempt of court Friday for continuing their relentless campaign to disrupt the annual whale hunt off the waters of Antarctica.

These eco-terrorists have no care or concern for human life. I hope that Paul Watson and his ilk pay dearly for their terrorist act!

Send these eco-nuts to prison for a long time!

5 ( +13 / -8 )

It'S ME, In case you don't know, Japan is abiding by the law and rules on whales hunt. Only English news are depicting it as if not.

Tina -here's a little hint for you. Reading that post, 'It's me' is on YOUR side

And here is a little shocker for you, so am I. While I would never eat whale personally, I do not condemn violence as a solution to any problem.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

I think the focus should be on whether Japan is really following the rules for whaling in international waters. What I mean is that quotas are set for scientific study

Have you considered whether the true criminals are those who have turned a moratorium (temporary) into a permanent ban?

Anyway, at least the US court is showing it could look past the American people's irrational love of whales (now, before anyone tries to say I shouldn't be involving the whole American people ... if the American government representing the American people is strong-arming the Japanese government into agreeing with such an irrational moratorium, I'm forced to assume as a democracy the American people as a whole are behind it).

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Have them pay the full amount and give Japanese whalers the right to arm themselves with equipment to drive these guys away if they come within said 500 feet. Then have SS cover the cost of the equipment every time it's used. If It wasn't illegal, I'd like to see the whalers arm themselves with cannons and blow these guys up if they violate the 500 feet rule. There'd be less idiots on this planet. Wanna do something? Follow the law. Don't like the law? Try changing it then, instead of attacking people. Nutcases the lot of them.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

I'm not a fan of SS either, but I think some people here should google what contempt of court actually is before they pop the champagne corks. They might be very confused and disappointed when the main ruling goes the other way.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Facts: The world court found Japan in violation of the IWC ban on commercial whaling. The "science" is worthless, and just a cover for putting whale meat on the tables in a country where few people actually eat whale meat. SS is not a "terrorist" organization. They have never hurt or killed anyone. Its the whalers who are eco-terrorists, bringing weapons of death to animals that live in a sanctuary. The court is wrong in this case. The US SS organization was not involved. Bring the suit to Australia and have the trial there in the appropriate court.

-5 ( +10 / -15 )

now all the US courts have to do is get Australia to impose its rulings on them since they are based in Australia, good luck with that. if SS isnt down there harassing the whalers itll be another entity in another name in another country. and Ill be donating to whichever that entity will be. J whalers will never have any peace as long as they keep hunting down in Antartica

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Let's also not forget that Japanese whalers are in contempt of court in relation to an injunction issued by the Australian federal court to stop activities in the southern ocean whale sanctuary. The whalers say Australian courts have no jurisdiction... this is the exact arguement SS made about the jurisdiction of US courts. Fortunately for the whalers, they have no physical presence in Australia so they cannot be arrested.

Again, I'm not a fan of SS but let's not pretend that the whalers are angels when it comes to resolving disputes through the courts.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

They have never hurt or killed anyone.

Yes they have, at least 3 people injured and if you include their own people it easily tops a dozen.

in a sanctuary.

A sanctuary that was established in violation of the IWC's own regulations. And a sanctuary that under it's own rules doesn't even apply to Japan anyways.

The US SS organization was not involved.

Yes they were. As the court ruled the US SS give money and equipment, to the tune of millions of dollars, knowing it would be used in violation of the injunction. If I give a gun to someone KNOWING they are going to use it to rob a bank, I am just as guilty.

now all the US courts have to do is get Australia to impose its rulings on them since they are based in Australia, good luck with that.

No, the main SSCS headquarters and bank accounts and source of charitable donations is in the US.

Let's also not forget that Japanese whalers are in contempt of court in relation to an injunction issued by the Australian federal court to stop activities in the southern ocean whale sanctuary.

No they are not. The Australian federal court says right in their own ruling that it is unenforceable and that the sanctuary doesn't apply to Japan.

this is the exact arguement SS made about the jurisdiction of US courts.

Well not quite. Since the equipment is claimed by the US branch of the SSCS on their US IRS filings and was bought with money donated to the US branch, and the money they sent to Australia came from donations to the US branch. That clearly gives the US courts jurisdiction, just like the court ruled.

6 ( +16 / -10 )

so what are the US going to do , go down to the Antartica or Australia and arrest them!! LOL Just as the whalers say Australia has no jurisdiction in Antartica waters, the US has no jurisdiction in Australia or Antartica waters also. if SS was disbanded tomorrow it will only be replaced with another entity in Australia or another country. just wait youll find this fight is far far from over.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

so what are the US going to do , go down to the Antartica or Australia and arrest them!! LOL

Seize their assets in the US. LOL

Seize their bank accounts in the US. LOL

Arrest Watson and friends for contempt. LOL

Issue a seizure order on the vessels, which are property of the US branch as shown by their IRS filings. A seizure that the Australian courts would be obligated to enforce. LOL

Is the laughing over yet?

3 ( +14 / -11 )

No but this places an implication that Discovery Channel as an accomplice in which they the US court can and will enforce.

Basically their 15 minutes in the lime light is going to be shut off for good.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Remember kids, if you want to make Japanese lawyers richer, donate to Sea Shepherd.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Why are these folk killing whales?

Have they no humanity?

You folk are making yourselves more and more isolated from the world, and Abe is speeding it along.

-7 ( +5 / -12 )

Seize their assets in the US. LOL

Seize their bank accounts in the US. LOL

Arrest Watson and friends for contempt. LOL

Issue a seizure order on the vessels, which are property of the US branch as shown by their IRS filings. A seizure that the Australian courts would be obligated to enforce. LOL

Is the laughing over yet?

Mike O' Brien. Cross both fingers, pray, write to Santa etc...none of this will happen. LOL.

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Mike O' Brien. Cross both fingers, pray, write to Santa etc...none of this will happen. LOL.

Read the court opinion, Ayler. The SSCS will pay tens of thousands of dollars to the Japanese lawyers. The SSCS will pay tens of thousands of dollars to the ICR for fuel and crew costs. Paul Watson and the SSCS board members will pay their share of these cost as they were found personally liable. ROFLMAO

Oh and it wouldn't surprise me if the SSCS US chapter lost their charity status, what with their whole board being found guilty of violating a court order.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Good ruling. Anti-whalers do not have the right to disrupt commerce nor do they have the right to place others in danger just because they don't like the idea of whaling.

Why are these folk killing whales?

Have they no humanity?

You folk are making yourselves more and more isolated from the world, and Abe is speeding it along.

They are killing whales for food? Do you have no humanity? Do you not eat living organisms yourself? eg plants and animals.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

The japanese whaling killers are a sorry minority

Unfortunately they get wide international coverage and press and make the thinking world feel the days of Japanese right wingers are back

People of Japan wake up ! nip this toxic weed in its bud.

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

nip this toxic weed in its bud.

Too late. It has been going on in the present form for over 60 years, no longer a bud to nip it is a full grown plant.

Oh and the last poll I saw showed a majority of Japanese support continued whaling, even from the Japanese who don't eat whale meat.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I'm sorry @Mike O'Brien, but you are completely incorrect when you make the rather extraordinary and easily disprovable claim that:

No they are not. The Australian federal court says right in their own ruling that it is unenforceable and that the sanctuary doesn't apply to Japan.

Paragraph 13 of the 2008 order in HSI v Kyodo Senpaku NSD 1519 2004 makes clear that for the purposes of the injunction, Japan's recognition of the whale sanctuary is irrelevant. The court says:

Japan rejects Australia's purported exercise of jurisdiction over waters that are considered by Japan to be the high seas. This is not a ground for invalidity of the EPBC Act: the sovereign claim by Australia to the Australian Antarctic Territory is not a matter capable of being questioned in this Court in this proceeding.

So can you please tell me where exactly the court has written the things you claim just in case I've missed something? The injunction is enforceable and is still live today. If the whalers set foot in Australia they would likely be charged with contempt of court.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

The Australian Antarctic Territory is about as real and recognized by the rest of the world's nations as unicorn tears. It is neutral international territory and waters period.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

The 9th Circuit ruled that the transfer of assets and control of the Sea Shepherd to Australia and other countries didn't change its 2012 order to the group to cease its dangerous activities.

Contrary to the commissioner's conclusions, the 9th Circuit said Watson and the Sea Shepherd's U.S. affiliate could be found liable for aiding and abetting the organization's foreign offices to violate the court's injunction.

"Sea Shepherd U.S. is liable because it intentionally furnished cash payments, and a vessel and equipment worth millions of dollars, to individuals and entities it knew would likely violate the injunction," Judge Milan Smith wrote for the unanimous panel.

The court ruled that the eco-terrorist SS can be held liable and that means the eco-terrorist SS can be made to pay fines and penalties for their repeated acts of violence. Hopefully, the eco-terrorist SS will also lose their non-taxable charity status. That will crush their ability to raise funds in the U.S..

This ruling will also provide incentive for other countries, such as Australia and the Netherlands, to restrict eco-terrorist SS financial support, and possibly remove all eco-terrorist SS garbage scows from the few national registries that still permit these violent thugs to leave and enter ports.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

This is too funny. The supporters of SS have been donating their hard earned, now the money will be redirected to the whalers! ROFL!

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Watson needs to be remanded in custody. Examples need to be made. The strongest message needs to be sent out for contempt, long custodial sentences as these actions undermine the rule of law. Whatever the rights or wrongs to violate the court’s injunction is an outrage.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

This is too funny. The supporters of SS have been donating their hard earned, now the money will be redirected to the whalers! ROFL!

The only place the money is being redirected is into the pockets of the lawyers... unfortunately you and I as Japanese taxpayers will pick up the tab if nothing can actually be collected from SS.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

So can you please tell me where exactly the court has written the things you claim just in case I've missed something?

46 ...the applicant acknowledges that there is no practical mechanism by which the orders of this Court can be enforced

That would be the court saying the injunction is unenforceable.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

wtfjapanDec. 20, 2014 - 11:50PM JST so what are the US going to do , go down to the Antartica or Australia and arrest them!! LOL

Do any of these SSCS members ever want to come home? Contempt charges in personam can be applied the moment they enter US waters. SSCS is headquartered in Washington State. We can seize their assets and pull their charitable tax exemption status. SSCI and it's followers have always displayed a complete lack of understanding or respect for the rule of law. Sad thing is that there are those who will continue to throw their hard earned money away so that SSCS can spend it defending itself from ruling against their criminal activities, or Watson's legal bills arising from being sued by Ady Gil and Peter Bethune. Want to spend your money feeling good by "saving whales"? Donate to a real conservationist organization, not the bunch of Sea Shepherd eco-terrorists.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@Mike O'Brien

Nice try with the selective quote. You do realize people can look this up right? Your "..." deleted the most important part of the paragraph that confirms precisely what I said. The whalers are in contempt of the Australia Federal court and they could be arrested if they set foot in Australia. Here is Paragraph 46 in full for the benefit of everyone:

-46.The respondent [Kyodo Senpaku] has, on the evidence, no presence or assets within the jurisdiction [Australia]. Unless the respondent's vessels enter Australia, thus exposing themselves to possible arrest or seizure, the applicant [The Humane Society Intl] acknowledges that there is no practical mechanism by which orders of this Court can be enforced (supplementary submissions, paragraph 36).

.

So how is that the court saying that its injunction is unenforceable? Again, I'm not a fan of SS or the whalers. It's fine if you support the whalers but being intellectually dishonest isn't going to help your cause.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

M3M3M3

Sorry to burst your bubble but even the Australian government knows that it can't enforce any rulings its courts have made on the Japanese research whaling in the Antarctic. That's why Australia hasn't lifted a finger on the occasions that the Japanese whaling fleet's security vessels actually entered Australian territorial waters while in pursuit of Sea Shepherd vessels. All the Australian government did each time was make a statement of dissatisfaction. For them to actually take any action against the Japanese research whaling in the Antarctic based on their territorial claim to portions of Antarctica and adjoining waters would be as farcical as if you unilaterally claimed the moon for yourself and decided to sue the United States for landing a spacecraft on it.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@USNinJapan2

Ah, but do you know why Japan hasn't challenged Australia's claim at the UN even though they refuse to recognise it? It's a bit odd isn't it? Especially after Australia has embarrassed Japan by taking them to the ICJ. When you find the answer, you might be surprised to discover that if Australia's claim is invalid, it would have devastating consequences for Japan's own EEZs.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Nice try with the selective quote.

Did the court say the injunction was unenforeable? Yes.

Does the rest of paragraph 46 say anything different? No.

And was your earlier quote just selective quoting? Yes. Why didn't you post the entire ruling if selective quoting is so anathema to you?

So how is that the court saying that its injunction is unenforceable?

Well by saying "...acknowledges that there is no practical mechanism by which orders of this Court can be enforced..."

No practical mechanism for enforcement is the same as unenforcebale.

unenforceable - not enforceable; not capable of being brought about by compulsion

Ah, but do you know why Japan hasn't challenged Australia's claim at the UN even though they refuse to recognise it? It's a bit odd isn't it?

Ah, but why haven't any of the other almost 200 countries that don't recognize Australia's claim challenged it at the UN even though they ALL refuse to recognize it?

Not odd at all. There is no reason to challenge a farcical claim unless the claimant tries to enforce it. If you want to say that you actually own my car but don't do anything to assert the claim, why would I waste my time and money to take you to court?

if Australia's claim is invalid, it would have devastating consequences for Japan's own EEZs.

Sorry but no it wouldn't. Japan's EEZ claims are based on proximity to internationally recognized Japanese territorial claims. Most of Australia's Antarctic Ocean EEZ claims are based on unrecognized territorial claims.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

M3M3M3

Ah, but do you know why Japan hasn't challenged Australia's claim at the UN even though they refuse to recognise it? It's a bit odd isn't it?

Odd? Not at all. Perhaps it's because none of the 191 other nations in the world recognize the AAT or bother to challenge it at the UN, Buenos Aires, or anywhere else because the territory is de facto neutral/shared international territory according to the Antarctic Treaty System? As for your attempt to equate this with the fundamentally different territorial disputes Japan has with China, South Korea, and Russia, it's laughable. No one is disputing Australia's claim because it doesn't even merit it and it is simply ignored by 99% of the world. Not at all the case with the Northern Territories, the Senkaku Islands, Takeshima, etc. where several powerful nations are actively vying over them with physical confrontations in some instances. Something tells me that those analogies aren't your forte...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Mike O'Brien, @USNinJapan2

It seems like we will probably have to agree to disagree this time. I was referring to the way Australia measures its EEZ in Antarctica in relation to the seabed being the same way Japan does, not any of the territorial disputes Japan is embroiled in.

Since you use the word farcical to describe Australia's claim, I'm curious as to what exactly you think is farcical about it? The measurement of the EEZ, the entire EEZ as a being a new territorial claim, the entire claim over land territory on grounds of effective control etc? But just to highlight how potentially theoretical this discussion is, would you recognize Australia's claim if they completely withdrew from all Antarctic treaties tomorrow? Surely just as the only thing that stops Japan from whaling in international waters is its voluntary membership of the IWC, the only thing that would limit Australia from claiming land under ordinary intl law principles in Antarctic are the various treaties Australia and the others voluntarily bind themselves by.

About 'enforceable', I certainly don't want to argue about the dictionary definition of the word. Let's just say the injunction is live and valid in Australian territory... or we can say it is 'practically unenforceable' if the whalers do not enter Australia. However, your original claim suggested that the court itself said it was enforceable on the grounds that Japan didn't recognize the whale sanctuary. That's what I took issue with.

In any case, you seem like smart people with a strong point of view, but I think being a bit more even handed would help. These issues clearly aren't as black and white as some people make them out to be.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I was referring to the way Australia measures its EEZ in Antarctica in relation to the seabed being the same way Japan does, not any of the territorial disputes Japan is embroiled in.

I wasn't talking about any territorial disputes either. And sorry but Australia measures its EEZ from land that isn't its territory, while Japan measures its EEZ from land that is its territory. Not anywhere near the same thing.

what exactly you think is farcical about it?

Well the fact that the ATS basically voids all land claims for signatories, like Australia. Or the fact that over 90% of the world doesn't recognize ANY of the Antarctic land claims. Or the fact that the claims that are made to Antarctic land overlap each other. It is as farcical as Saddam's claim that Kuwait was Iraq's 19th province.

would you recognize Australia's claim

Well not being a nation, I am not in the position to recognize any land claims. But my guess is that if Australia pulled out of the ATS even the few countries that currently recognize their claims would end that recognition and would start arguing over dividing up Australia's old claims.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

It's questionable if Australian court could enforce the ruling even if any of the whalers are caught in Australian territory with Australia being a signatory of the Antarctic Treaty stating they will not make no new claims shall be asserted while the treaty is in force.

EEZ is a new system which was adopted after the Antarctic Treaty so even within domestic court it will be violation of the treaty.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Mike O'Brien

Well the fact that the ATS basically voids all land claims for signatories, like Australia. Or the fact that over 90% of the world doesn't recognize ANY of the Antarctic land claims.

First, the Antarctic Treaty does no such thing. In fact, it does the exact opposite. It specifically says that the treaty does not prejudice any existing claims. Australia's claims pre-date the ATS. I'll paste the full text of Article 4 in full:

Article IV

[territorial claims]

-1. Nothing contained in the present Treaty shall be interpreted as:

(a) a renunciation by any Contracting Party of previously asserted rights of or claims to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica;

(b) a renunciation or diminution by any Contracting Party of any basis of claim to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica which it may have whether as a result of its activities or those of its nationals in Antarctica, or otherwise;

(c) prejudicing the position of any Contracting Party as regards its recognition or nonrecognition of any other State's right of or claim or basis of claim to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica.

-2. No acts or activities taking place while the present Treaty is in force shall constitute a basis for asserting, supporting or denying a claim to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica. No new claim, or enlargement of an existing claim, to territorial sovereignty shall be asserted while the present Treaty is in force

Secondly, most countries do not recognize Antarctic claims out of respect for the politically neutral principles of the ATS, but they do not deny them either. But more importantly, international recognition would not be a relevant factor for the ICJ if they consider a challenge to a terra nullius territorial claim. No matter how much other countries might dislike it, a country that discovers land and takes effective control will not be prevented from validly claiming that land under principles of international law. If tomorrow all countries decided to deny Japan's terra nullius claim over the Senkaku Islands, it wouldn't mean that Japan's claim would become farcical overnight and that they would lose any dispute at the ICJ.

I expected your objection to Australia's claim to be that new territorial claims are prohibited by the ATS and that the EEZ fits the description of a new territorial claim. Some people argue this point, but the fact that the EEZs were introduced after the ATS makes it unclear whether they are pre-existing rights that have just now been recognized or whether they are completely new claims. No country has challenged this political question because it goes against the principles if the treaty. It's really Japan that has disturbed the status quo by unilaterally engaging in commercial activity in the Antarctic, something which many people might say is against the spirit of the treaty.

I hope you, USNinJapan2, SamuraiBlue, as well as the one person who is still thumbs uping my comments have a very merry Christmas!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Just ignore where the ATS holds all claims in abeyance, meaning as long as Australia is a signatory their claims are basically void. Just like I said.

but they do not deny them either

Yes they do. They fish and traverse the Antarctic Ocean with no regards to the claims.

the ICJ if they consider a challenge

Well then maybe Australia should have brought their territorial claim to the ICJ. Oh, wait. They specifically said they weren't asserting their claim in the ICJ.

it wouldn't mean that Japan's claim would become farcical overnight and that they would lose any dispute at the ICJ.

LOL. Yes it would. If no other country recognized the claim then it would be farcical, just like Saddams claim to Kuwait was.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

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