A ship in Aberdeen Harbour has been released by authorities after crew were paid backdated wages and returned home.
The Ben Nevis, a Maltese-registered offshore supply vessel, was detained by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) earlier this month amid concerns for workers welfare.
According to a trade union inspector, the ship’s crew were owed as much as five months wages in some cases for work carried out between June and September.
Of the 24 Indian nationals that make up the boat’s full time staff, it’s understood 10 returned home while 14 remained on-board.
A spokesman for Global Offshore Services, the ship’s Indian owner, previously insisted it had paid the salaries of “all crew on the vessel”.
It had been thought that the firm had planned to take advantage of a legal loophole that would allow the Ben Nevis to leave Aberdeen, despite still owing wages.
In the last few months the ship has been on charter hire to north-east based firms such as Peterson UK, oil producer Dana Petroleum and Moray Offshore Windfarm (East) Ltd.
But, authorities boarded the vessel this morning and, after receiving evidence that the problems that led to the vessel being detained had been put right, released it from detention.
A MCA spokeswoman said: “The Ben Nevis has been released from detention by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, after the owners paid their crew and repatriated those who needed to go home.
“MCA surveyors boarded the vessel again this morning (30 Oct) after receiving evidence that the problems that led to the detention had been put right.”
A spokesman for the ITF unions said: “It’s good to see that they’ve been paid but it shouldn’t happen in the first place. Hopefully the company will learn and will start following the rules. There’s a lack of regulation and there’s more than one factor that needs to be looked at to protect seafarers in the future.”