CMA-CGM Shipping Line Face Lawsuits in ‘Hijacked’ Container Case

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Guinean Company, Agid Sariu Seige Medina Dispenser BP has filed a lawsuit against CMG-CGM shipping company, one of the largest shipping companies for its role in helping Montserrado Group of Industries get hold of the alleged stolen container mark  AXUI1476111.

The Guinean company, which is claiming ownership of the container and its content, has sued CMA-CGM for disregarding the container original bill of lading that was agreed between Arhaven, CMA-CGM, and them. The case is ongoing at the Civil Law Court ‘A’ at the Temple of Justice.

The container was said to have been loaded on February 28, 2020, and later departed Istanbul, Turkey for Conakry, Guinean and was shipped to Guinea on March 1, 2020, by one Raze Arhaven, an Iranian born Turkish national and general manager of Aria Gida MADDI Sanvet, a company based on Turkey, according to the original bill of lading obtained by the Daily Observer from the court.

Bill of lading (BOL) is one of the most important documents in the shipping process. To ship any goods, a bill of lading is required and acts as a receipt and a contract. A completed BOL legally shows that the carrier has received the freight as described and is obligated to deliver that freight in good condition to the consignee.

The information in the bill of lading is critical as it directs the actions of personnel all along the route of the shipment – where it’s going, the piece count, how it is billed, and how it is to be handled on the dock and trailers. The consignee has to check whether the shipment is collected on delivery which means that the driver will collect the cost of the merchandise on delivery of the freight. But in the case of the container, it was originally bound for Conakry, Guinean, and later transferred to the Montserrado Group of Industries by Arhaven according to the original bill of lading that was agreed by the three parties, Arhaven, CMA-CGM and the Guinean company, Agid Sariu Seige Medina Dispenser BP.

The original bill of lading, copy of which is with the Daily Observer, had Conakry, Guinea, as its final destination and Istanbul, Turkey as the place of loading. However, another bill of lading that is entitled “Draft waybill of lading” for the same container had three parties, Arhaven, CMA-CGM and Montserrado Group of Industries with Monrovia, Liberia as its final destination and Istanbul, Turkey as the place of loading.

It is against this backdrop that the Guinean company claiming that the original bill of lading was issued correctly, but the containers were routed incorrectly to the Montserrado Group of Industries based in Monrovia, Liberia, of which their lawsuit now involves the shipping line, CMA-CGM. Initially, the government placed a stay order on the release of the container pending an investigation into a complaint of criminality filed by a Guinean Company, Agid Sariu Seige Medina Dispenser BP against the Montserrado Group of Industries.

But the container was reportedly tracked in Madrid, Spain, after Raze changed the original bill of lading that contained the ownership and destination of the Guinean Company before being shipped to Kaffel, which the Guinean company is holding the government responsible for allegedly facilitating theft by Kaffel. “There is no criminality on the part of Kaffel or the government facilitating anything; we did not inform the Guinean company when we released the container because their claim of criminality was far from the truth and therefore we have to release it to Kaffel,” the government had earlier argued.

Author

  • Anthony Kokoi is a young Liberian sports writer who has an ever-growing passion for the development of the game of football (soccer) and other sports. For the past few years, he has been passionately engaged in reporting the developments of the game in the country. He is an associate member of the Sports Writers Association of Liberia (SWAL). He is a promoter of young talents. He also writes match reports and makes an analysis of Liberian Football.

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