US takes ownership of ship suspected in N. Korea oil scheme
NEW YORK (AP) — A tanker ship allegedly used in an illegal scheme to smuggle oil to North Korea has a brand-new owner: the U.S. government.
A federal judge in New York City issued a judgment of forfeiture Friday authorizing the U.S. to take ownership of the 2,734-ton M/T Courageous.
Prosecutors say the ship delivered petroleum products to North Korea through ship-to-ship transfers and direct shipments to a North Korean port. Cambodian authorities seized the ship in March 2020 and have held it since.
The suspected owner and operator of the ship, Kwek Kee Seng, of Singapore, has been charged and remains at large. Court records don’t list a lawyer who could speak for him.