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FMC Compromise Agreements Recover $617,500 in Penalties

Thursday, October 24, 2013
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

The Federal Maritime Commission announced Oct. 22 that it has recovered a total of $617,500 in civil penalties as a result of the following seven compromise agreements with nine non-vessel-operating common carriers and freight forwarders located in the U.S. and abroad.

- A licensed NVOCC located in California paid $55,000 to settle charges that it misdescribed the commodities shipped under certain service contracts, improperly obtained reduced rates limited to certain named accounts under certain service contracts, and provided service other than at the rates and charges in its NVOCC tariff.

- Another licensed NVOCC in California paid $55,000 to settle charges that it engaged in cargo   misdescription activities involving inbound shipments to the West Coast and provided service that was not in accordance with the rates or charges contained in its NVOCC tariff.

- A bonded NVOCC with offices in China paid $70,000 to settle charges that it knowingly and willfully obtained transportation under service contracts to which it was not a party and provided transportation in the liner trade that was not in accordance with the rates and charges set forth in its published tariffs.

- A licensed and bonded NVOCC based in New York paid $75,000 to settle charges that it knowingly and willfully transported cargo for the account of ocean transportation intermediaries, none of which had a published tariff or bond, and provided service to its customers that was not in accordance with the rates or charges contained in its published NVOCC tariff.

- A tariffed and bonded NVOCC located in Taiwan paid $80,000 to settle charges that it knowingly and willfully obtained transportation at less than the rates or charges otherwise applicable by falsely declaring the cargo to be shipped on behalf of a named account in the service contract.

- A licensed NVOCC and freight forwarder headquartered in California paid $140,000 after submitting a voluntary self-disclosure of potential violations arising from a failure to maintain a general tariff covering all points or ports on its own routes and on any through transportation routes established.

- Two bonded NVOCCs located in China and a bonded and licensed NVOCC and freight forwarder based in California paid a total of $142,500 to settle charges that they provided a false U.S. inland destination point for inbound shipments, allowed one of the NVOCCs to access service contracts to which it was not a signatory, and provided transportation in the liner trade that was not in accordance with the rates and charges set forth in their published tariffs.

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