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LEGAL

COMMITTEE

99th Session

Agenda item 8

 

LEG 99/8/XX

XX XX 2012

​ Original:  ENGLISH

MATTERS ARISING FROM THE 106TH AND 107TH REGULAR SESSIONS OF THE COUNCIL; THE TWENTY-SIXTH EXTRAORDINARY SESSION OF THE COUNCIL; AND THE TWENTY-SEVENTH REGULAR SESSION OF THE ASSEMBLY

 

Draft guidelines on the collation and preservation of evidence following an allegation of a serious crime having taken place on board a ship or following a report of a missing person from a ship, and pastoral and medical care of victims.

 

Submitted by the Philipines, United Kingdom, and the Cruise Lines International Association.

 

 

SUMMARY

 

Executive summary:

This document presents draft guidance to accompany document LEG 99/8/XX on the unplanned output on the collation and preservation of evidence following an allegation of a serious crime having taken place on board a ship or following a report of a missing person from a ship, and pastoral and medical care of victims. Building on the approach taken in MSC.1/Circ.1404, the cosponsors have adapted that advice to fit the particular issues related to crimes on board as well as incorporating guidance on actions in the event of a missing person and pastoral and medical care of victims.

 

 

Strategic direction:

6.4

 

High-level action:

n/a

 

Planned output:

n/a

 

Action to be taken:

Paragraph 2

 

Related documents:

LEG 98/INF.3 and LEG 98/14, A 27/10/1, A 27/C.1/WP.2, A 27/INF.8, A.1037(27), A.1038(27), A.1058(27), LEG.1/Circ.6, MSC.1/Circ.1404, LEG 99/8/XX, MSC.255(84)

 

 

 

Introduction

 

1​In responding to the call for submissions contained within A.1058(27), this documentbuilds on the approach taken in MSC.1/Circ.1404, and contained at Annex draft guidelines on the particular issues related to crimes on board as well as incorporating guidance on actions in the event of a missing person and pastoral and medical care of victims.

 

Action required:

 

2​The committee is invited to review the proposed guidance at Annex and take action as appropriate.

*** ANNEX

 

DRAFT GUIDELINES ON THE COLLATION AND PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE FOLLOWING AN ALLEGATION OF A SERIOUS CRIME HAVING TAKEN PLACE ONBOARD A SHIP OR FOLLOWING A REPORT OF A MISSING PERSON FROM A SHIP, AND PASTORAL AND MEDICAL CARE OF VICTIMS

 

 

1​The Assembly, at its twenty-seventh regular session and through resolution A.1058(27), invited submissions on the collation and preservation of evidence following an allegation of a serious crime having taken place on board a ship or following a report of a missing person from a ship, and pastoral and medical care of victims.

 

2​Resolution A.1058(27), recalled that article 92 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) which provides that ships shall sail under the flag of one State only and, save in exceptional cases expressly provided for in international treaties or in UNCLOS, shall be subject to its exclusive jurisdiction on the high seas,

 

3​Resolution A.1058(27), recalled further that article 27 of UNCLOS, which provides that criminal jurisdiction of a coastal State should not be exercised on board a foreign ship passing through the territorial sea to arrest any person or conduct any investigation in connection with any crime committed on board the ship during its passage, except in the circumstances set forth in that article,

 

4​Resolution A.1058(27), noted that a thorough investigation of a serious crime on board a ship may be a lengthy process and that certain cases, in which more than one State may have jurisdiction, may present complications and challenges to the authorities responsible for such investigations

 

5​Resolution A.1058(27), noted further that , whilst voluntary, such guidance would assist shipowners, operators and masters in co-operating with relevant investigating authorities and contribute to effective and efficient criminal investigations in cases of serious crime or missing persons from ships and would further facilitate and expedite cooperation and coordination between investigating authorities, consistent with international law,

 

6​Recognising that sexual assault and crimes against the person are unacceptable and that all persons on board have the right to security of the person and freedom from sexual harassment,

 

7​Member Governments are invited to consider the Guidelines as set out in the annex, and advise Administrations and other authorities to assist in the collation and preservation of evidence following an allegation of a serious crime having taken place on board a ship or following a report of a missing person from a ship, and pastoral and medical care of victims whilst taking into account that issues of criminal jurisdiction should be consistent with international law,

 

8​Intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations with consultative status arealso invited to consider the Guidelines as set out in the annex and to advise their membership to act accordingly,

 

9​Member Governments and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations with consultative status are invited to consider bringing the results of the experience gained from using the Guidelines, as set out in the annex, to the attention of the Committee.

 

 

***

 

G:\AFP\SP2all\MARE\004 Safety\027 CRIMES ON BOARD SHIPS\0001 Policy on crimes aboard UK registered vessels\120130 – Draft Crime Guidelines with comments.doc

 

ANNEX

 

DRAFT GUIDELINES ON THE COLLATION AND PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE FOLLOWING AN ALLEGATION OF A SERIOUS CRIME HAVING TAKEN PLACE ONBOARD A SHIP OR FOLLOWING A REPORT OF A MISSING PERSON FROM A SHIP, AND PASTORAL AND MEDICAL CARE OF VICTIMS

 

Introduction

 

It is recognised that the risk of a serious crime taking place on a ship will normally beaddressed through the applicable onboard security arrangements, but that the risk of seriouscrime on board ships cannot be completely eliminated by any reasonable security measures.As crimes continue to be committed, it is imperative for all involved that they are fully investigated by the appropriate authorities. In addition, it is of the utmost concern that allegations of sexual assault and other serious crimes are taken seriously by all involved, that the alleged victim is protected from retaliation and that their pastoral needs are fully addressed.

 

However, the full and complete investigation of crimes at sea present particular challenges for all involved. In many Administrations the first point of contact in the event of an incident on board is the maritime Administration. Many Administrations are organised such that they will investigate incidents using the Casualty Investigation Code (MSC.255(84)) and that criminal investigations will be undertaken by a separate agency. Further, persons of nationalities different from that of the Flag State may be involved in the incident and those States may wish to exercise their jurisdiction during the investigation.

 

Cooperation and coordination between interested States and parties

 

The exercise of jurisdiction by the coastal State, flag State and a substantially interested State, should be undertaken in a manner consistent with international law. Regardless of which State can or does exercise jurisdiction, all investigations should be conducted in the most expeditious manner possible. All States involved should coordinate and cooperate to ensure that as full and complete investigation is undertaken. One State should take the primary investigative role and in doing so should:

 

• Ensure effective co-operation and contact between it and substantially interested States as soon as practicable after an incident or accident has been reported;
• Maintain contact throughout the conduct of the investigations;
• Exchange any factual information that is considered important to the investigation;
• Maintain a regular dialogue after the on-scene investigation has been completed whilst ensuring that the victim and / or victims family are kept fully appraised at all stages of the investigation process;
• Continue to exchange information on the progress of proceedings, and provide timings on potential report publications or potential criminal proceedings; and
• Conclude the investigation in as timely a manner as possible.

It should be noted that the public interest requires that safety considerations are of paramount importance, the consequence of which may mean that the interests of anaccident investigation may take precedence over any criminal investigation. This does not preclude the need to be cognisant in ensuring the preservation of evidence pending any possible future criminal investigation.

 

Role of the master

 

The overarching role of the master is to ensure the preservation of life and the safety of passengers and crew. Therefore, the care of the passengers and crew should take precedence over any concerns related to the preservation of evidence.

 

The master, should attempt to secure the scene of the alleged crime as soon as possible. It should be noted that the master will probably not be a professionally trained crime scene investigator and so should not be held liable for any loss, damage or contamination of any evidence that he collects nor for any acts or omissions during this process.  

 

The main aim for the master should be to secure the scene of the alleged crime in such a manner that would allow a professionally trained crime scene investigator to be able to undertake their work. Therefore, if the space is not a public space, then the best option is for that space to be sealed and all persons be prevented from entering it. An example would be where an incident has taken place in a cabin, then the best option would be for the cabin door to be locked, the key secured and notices posted which would inform that no one should enter it. Where an incident has occurred in a space that cannot be secured, then the master should attempt to preserve the evidence. In securing evidence, which should include CCTV where appropriate, the master should use the techniques and procedures outlined in annex 3.

 

At the first available opportunity following the report of a serious crime or confirmed missing person report, the master or their representative ashore should make contact with the jurisdictionally responsible Law Enforcement Authority to seek supportive advice and guidance in conjunction with Annex 3. This supporting process will seek to ensure the integrity of an investigation until such times when Law Enforcement officials can gain access to a ship to progress the investigation.

 

The master should also interview all involved in order to gain information whilst it is still fresh in their minds. Example of forms to be used for taking statements from both the victim and the alleged offender can be found in annexes 1 and 2 respectfully. Any person may refuse to cooperate and so not provide a statement. A detailed list of all potential independent witnesses should also be collated.

 

The master should aim to remove from the vessel any person who has attempted to commit suicide as soon as possible. The master should enquire as to the reasons behind the attempted suicide in order to ascertain if it is a result of any incident on board the ship. Any persons who have attempted suicide should be treated with care and respect.

 

 

 

Missing persons

 

In the event that a person is reported to be missing, a full search of the vessel should be immediately undertaken. The ship should be searched thoroughly as it is not uncommon for a person who is missing to be hiding on board. Consideration should be given to the sounding of the emergency alarm as the quickest means of mustering all the crew, including the missing person. During this search, the last known movements of the missing should be ascertained. Procedures for conducting a search should be detailed in the ship’s safety management system. Once measures have been taken to determine  that a person is missing from the ship, then the vessel should instigate normal search and rescue procedures.

 

 

Handling allegations

 

Any allegation made relating to criminality should be handled carefully. The person who has made the allegation must be treated with compassion and the allegations taken seriously. The person making the allegation should at all times be regarded as a victim. The victim’s personal safety is of the utmost importance. The master should carefully take the statement from the victim at the earliest point in time. The victim should not be left alone, unless they request it.

 

The person or persons whom the allegation are made about should be interviewed and statements taken. Any person may refuse to cooperate and so not provide a statement. The role of the master should be to collect evidence, it is not the role of anyone on board to conduct a trial.

 

Consideration should be made of the possibility of removing all persons involved from the vessel at the earliest point only after having agreed this process with the appropriate Law Enforcement Authority.

 

Communications

 

The master should contact the flag State in the following circumstances:

 

At the commencement of a search and rescue;

In the event of an allegation of a serious crime; or

In the event that a serious crime has taken place.

 

The flag State should then conduct an initial investigation based upon the report from the master. Upon receiving the initial report, the flag State should contact the substantially interested State if it is concluded that further investigation by an appropriate Law Enforcement Authority is warranted. The flag State should utilise the contact point information contained within GISIS as their first point of reference when contacting the substantially interested States.

 

 

 

 

Pastoral and medical care of victims

 

A key part of ensuring the pastoral care of a victim is to take their allegations seriously. The victim should receive respect for coming forward, recognition that the allegation will be investigated and support during this time of trauma. The victim should be given every opportunity to explain what has happened and give a full account of the incident. The victim should be reassured that they will be protected from any repercussions of the allegations. The victim should also be free from any burden of decision making relating to the offender. It is the responsibility of the State to deal with the alleged offender and not the victim’s.

 

Given that the Master will likely be leading an initial investigation, it may be appropriate for the master to appoint another suitable person to offer the pastoral care and support to a victim.

 

The victim should have full and free access to medical care and attention by a medical professional either on board or ashore, until the victim’s condition is stabilized. The victim’s privacy should be respected during this process. Where necessary radio medical advice should be sought.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Annex 1

 

Victim Statement

 

Statement of ​

                               (Given names)                                                       (Family name)

 

Name of Ship ​

 

Flag State ​

 

IMO No. ​

 

 

Description of alleged offenders: The information given by the victim should be in as much detail as possible from what they personally saw, heard or experienced.  Use a new sheet for each alleged offender.  The alleged offender should be described as accurately as possible.  Ifthe name of the alleged offender is not known then the alleged offender should be given a number to distinguish him.  This number should also be used as a reference in the crew statement.

 

 

Alleged offender No. …

 

Name: ​

(If given or heard called by others)

 

Approximate Age: ​

 

Approximate Height: ​

 

Build: ​

(slim/medium/large/heavy)

 

Ethnic Origin: ​

 

Eye Colour: ​Hair Colour​

 

Hair Length: ​ (Cropped/short/medium/long/over ears/tied back)

 

Facial Hair: ​ (Beard/moustache)​Facial Scars: ​

 

Body Markings: ​ (Description and location on body)

 

Tattoos: ​ (Describe where and what if possible)

Clothing: ​

(Colour and type of outer clothing, for example red short-sleeve T-shirt, long blue trousers)

 

Footwear: ​ (Barefoot/sandals/other)

 

Neck wear: ​Wrist wear: ​Ankle wear: ​

 

Weapons used: ​

 

Description of the incident:

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

 

 

 

 

 

Annex 2

 

Alleged Offender Statement

 

Statement of ​

                               (Given names)                                                       (Family name)

 

Name of Ship ​

 

Flag State ​

 

IMO No. ​

 

Description of the incident:

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

 

 

 

Annex 3

 

Independent Witness Statement

 

Statement of ​

                               (Given names)                                                        (Family name)

 

Name of Ship ​

 

Flag State ​

 

IMO No. ​

 

Description of the incident:

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

 

 

 

 

Section 1

 

Securing the Crime Scene and Recovery and Packaging of Exhibits

 

The following guidelines are intended to assist the investigator to recover valuable material which after forensic examination by a competent authority may assist in the subsequent identification, arrest and prosecution of the alleged offender.

 

The initial actions taken immediately following the report of a crime are crucial, and this is known as ‘The Golden Hour Principle’ The Golden Hour Principle

Police often use the term the Golden Hour to describe the principle that effective early action can result in securing significant material that would otherwise be lost to the investigation. Where the police are informed of an incident shortly after it has occurred.

 

By failing to respond swiftly, forensic opportunities that could otherwise be lost, the testimony of witnesses can also be obtained while the offence is still fresh in their mind, CCTV images and other data can be collected before it is deleted and action can be taken to secure scenes before they become contaminated. Even where the incident happened some time before Security are alerted, effective early action can often lead to the recovery of material which enables the investigation to make rapid progress. The importance of immediately following up on obvious lines of enquiry cannot be overemphasised.

Crime Scene Assessment                       Preservation of Crime scene(s)

Offender Enquiries                                  Victim/Witness Enquiries

Photograph scene(s)                               Forensic Recovery

Victim / Witness Interviews                      Reporting

Statements

 

The investigator should:

 

 

.1​Wear fresh protective clothing such as overalls, rubber gloves (for each separate item if practical) as well as have some facial protection,

e.g., chemical/dust masks, to give some protection to the investigator himself and to avoid distribution of own fingerprints and biological material on the recovered items.

 

 

.2​Items in the open and vulnerable to weather conditions should be given priority over those that are enclosed, e.g., Bridge, machinery spaces, cabins, mess room, etc.

 

.3​All items are to be photographed, identified, labeled, and logged at the location found before removal and packaging.  The camera should be set to the correct date and time before starting.  This will help ensure an accurate visual record which would be of evidential value.  The film or digital imaging record will also be subject to evidential value.        

 

Section 2

 

Identification and Labelling

 

Each item recovered will need to be given an ”identification reference” with a sequential number (i.e. 01, 02, 03, etc.) to link it to the point of recovery and by whom.

 

For example an abbreviation of the vessel’s name, the point of discovery, e.g., Deck 3 midships stairwell in Zone 2, the initials (not full name) of the finder and the sequential number of the item recovered.

 

Each item when packaged will be given a label with the same unique reference to link it to the point of discovery.  An example of this could be if the ship was named Sea Spirit and the person recovering was Ronaldo Fernandez, giving an identification reference of:

 

SS/Date & Time/Crew Mess Room /RF/1, …/RF/2, …RF/3 etc.

 

Where an item of obvious significance is found, then the person recovering AND the person able to identify it in relation to alleged offender should include this on their pro-forma statement (see ANNEX 1). Should more than one person be involved in recovering items,then the identification reference would include that person’s initials, also starting from 01.

 

All items recovered will need to be safely stored in a clean and dry environment until such time as they are landed ashore.

 

If a paper sack or cardboard box is used to package the item, then the identification reference should be written in ink or similar (not pencil) on the outside of the package.  In the case of plastic bags, glass jars or smaller containers, then a reference label will need to be attached.  Please note that adhesive tape and NOT staples should be used to attach the label.

 

Example:

 

IDENTIFICATION REFERENCE

 

……SS………./..03-03-2011..1425 / Crew Mess Room /……….RF…………/…01……….……

(Ship name) /  (Date/Time)          /      (Location)       /  (Recovered by) /   (Seq. number)

 

Brief description:

 

 

 

 

Signature:

 

Section 3

 

Log of Items Recovered From Search or Seizure

 

Item No

Date/

Time

Location found

Description of item

Recovered by

Signature

Identification Reference

Remarks

01

03/03/2011

1425

Crew Mess Rm

Knife used byalleged offender

Ronaldo Fernandez

 

As above

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Section 4

Guidelines on recovery and packaging of exhibits

 

Type of Exhibit

Sampling/Treatment

Recommended Packaging

Practical Options for Consideration

 

WARNING:

THE HANDLING OF BODY FLUIDS CONSTITUTES A HEALTH HAZARD

ALWAYS SEEK ADVICE IF UNSURE

 

BLOOD

A)  Blood staineditems originating from alleged offender

If an easily removable item, e.g., knife, ashtray, bottle, etc. (see further down re: clothing), allow the item to dry completely and naturally before packaging.

 

DO NOT accelerate drying.

 

Make a note on exhibit seizure form if blood stain was wet when obtained.

Place each individual item in a separate suitable, properly sealed container, e.g., sealed strong paper bags or stout paper sacks.  In the absence of sacks, cardboard boxes will suffice.  Bags/sacks should be folded over twice and sealed with adhesive tape (adhesivetape or similar), boxes should also be sealed withtape.

 

Clearly mark any sack or container that contains blood with  ’BIOHAZARD’

Bags/paper sacks must not have been used previously.  If no ’police issue’ sacks are available, suitable sacks would be those used for paper waste disposal.  If a cardboard box is used, it should be as clean as possible and lined with clean paper.  Write the exhibit identification reference on the sack/box as you seal it.

 

Note: Plastic bags shouldnot be used for blood stained items as they promote dampness.  Nor should staplers ever be used to seal bags.

 

Seek advice and guidance from Ships Doctor/Medic and/or shore authorities if required.

B)  Bloodstains on immovableobjects

 

 

Mark any sack or container that contains blood with ‘BIOHAZARD’

1)  Pools of wet blood

 

WARNING –Syringes and needles pose a serious health hazard and must be handled with extreme care

 

Wherever possible seek medical advice before handling

Can be collected using a syringe.

 

 

 

 

 

Sample of the blood can be taken by swabbing, ensuring that a sample is taken from each individual pool.

Blood (not syringe) to be placed into a clean, drybottle/jar with a screw top.  Syringe to be disposed of in proper ‘sharps’ box.

 

Area taken from to be indicated in notes, exhibit reference documented on outside of swab then placed in an  exhibit bag

 

Please make note as to type of stain i.e. wet/dry

As above.

2) Partly clotted blood

Lift with a clean knife or scalpel blade.

As above.

As above.

 

Keep all WET or SEMISOLID blood samples in a cool place.  If delay likely in passing to authorities, consider deep freezing samples (away from food products).  Takeadvice before doing so.

3) Dry blood  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If practical and possible, cut away the surface containing the stain.  A non stained part of the item should also be taken as a control sample.

 

OR

 

Scrape dry blood onto a clean sheet of paper.

Place each individual item (including the control sample) into a separate suitable container, e.g.,paper sack, cardboard box and seal properly with adhesive tape.

 

Fold paper carefully and seal in a labelledenvelope.

Seek advice from Ships Doctor/Medic and shore authorities.

 

Never use staplers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

4) Semen stained items

The whole item containing the stain should be taken. If the stain is still wet, ALLOW ITEM TO DRY NATURALLY in an isolated area, before packaging.

 

Avoid talking over the item, as contamination can occur.

 

If small items such as tampon, sanitary towel, knickers should be frozen where possible.

 

Condoms should be sealed with either a clip or tied at the top.

 

Place each individual item in a sealed paper sack or clean cardboard box.

 

Please note any stains which were wet when obtained, within the notes and on exhibit.

 

As above.

May be impractical to obtain and store. However if possible could provide valuable evidence.

FIBRES & HAIRS

Items onto which fibres may have been transferred
(e.g., from victim’s clothing to other clothing, bedding,weapons)

Where possible recover the whole item with the minimum of disturbance.  If it cannot be packaged, cut out approximately 20 cm square of material OR pull out tufts of fibres.  Otherwise, seek advice from shore authorities as to fibre sampling.

Place in an envelope sealing all seams and openings.  Large items should be placed in a clean paper sack or cardboard box.  If there is more than one piece thenwrap each item SEPARATELY and sealeffectively with adhesive tape.

Do not use staplers, seal with adhesive tape.
A plastic sack could be used if the item is completely dry.

 

Polythene bags (providing no dampness) or paper sacks can be used.

Rope or Twine used by alleged offender

Recover the whole length of rope if possible OR obtain a length at least 30 cm long.  For suspicious deaths or suicide, recover the whole item.

Wrap each item separately in a polythene or paper sack and seal effectively.

Do not use staplers to seal any bag.  Always use adhesive tape.

Where there is a possibility of a PHYSICAL FIT between broken or cut ends

If the rope must be cut to remove it, first clearly label the original cut or broken ends.

 

Always leave knots intact.

Protect the cut or broken ends with paper or polythene bags so that they cannot be damaged and place each individual piece of rope or twine in a separate polythene or paper sack.

As well as potential evidence re: a crime, such evidence could be of considerable value to an accident investigation or inquest re: suicide.

Items recovered that may have hairs present

 

 

 

Recover the whole item wherever possible.

Wrap each item separately in a polythene or paper sack and ensure the bag is completely sealed.

Do not use staples to secure the bag, only adhesive tape.

CLOTHING, BEDDING AND FOOTWEAR

Clothing (used or left)

Recover the whole item of clothing.

As above.

As above.

Wet or damp items

 

WARNING –

See first page re: handling materials containing body fluids

Allow to dry naturally as soon as possible on a paper-lined surface.

When completely dry package as above.

 

If cannot dry place in plastic bag and freeze. (if very wet)

Avoid risks of contamination by drying at separate locations where practical.

Footwear

 

 

Package any footwear used by the alleged offender(s).

Use separate paper sacks or cardboard boxes for each item and seal securely.

Suitable boxes might be those that contained photocopier paper.

 

Do not place in plastic as will sweat.

Bedding

Where possible and practical recover whole item. Mark upper and lower surfaces head and foot to establish orientation of sheets, blankets, quilts, etc.

Wrap each item separately at the recovery location if possible. Place in a stout paper sack and seal with adhesive tape.

Ensure that all recovered items are kept separate to avoid cross contamination. If a number of cabins are involved, ensure different staff recovers bedding and bag and seal items at a separate location before storage.

 

FOOTWEAR MARKS

Surface transfer marks

Where possible recover whole item, e.g., on paper(s), cardboard, glass, bedding, etc.

Place each item separately in an appropriate and clean container
(e.g., cardboard box)
to protect.

As above.

 

If not possible to recover consider photographing placing two rulers at right angles to show size of mark.

If digital photographs taken, do not use any photo enhancement facilities.  Leave for experts to improve on.

If film photography is used, package the entire film cassette.

GLASSWARE & CERAMICS

Glasses, cups mugs, etc., used by the alleged offender(s)

 

 

 

Recover whole or broken items used by the alleged offender.

Place any broken pieces in a polythene bag or paper envelope and place in a sturdy cardboard box.  Whole items should be individually packaged.  Seal the box completely with adhesive tape.

If a box or sack contains broken items that could cut or injure, please label  ’CAUTION, INJURY HAZARD’.

FIRE ACCELERANTS AND ASSOCIATED MATERIALS

NOTE: Gathering evidence from fire scenes is a highly specialised skill and should be left to experts in that field. The following guidelines are for use in circumstances where the scene cannot for operational reasons be preserved before the   attendance of the relevant experts

 

Obtain urgent advice from shore authorities giving a detailed account of scene, damage caused and of any obvious accelerant used.

 

 

Photograph and if possible video the scene in great detail together with any associated peripheral damage including smoke damage and staining e.g., outside cabin, on shell of ship, etc.

Video cassettes and/or used films must be labelled and stored securely immediately after use. Do not process films unless instructed to by shore authorities.

 

Obtain urgent advice from shore authorities re preserving and packaging any item discovered.

Consider the use of the Ship’s Photographer. The more photographs/video that can be taken from different angles the better.

Control sample of fire accelerant(petrol, paraffin, etc.)

 

 

 

 

If there are obvious signs of the use of accelerant e.g. can of petrol, tin of butane gas, lighter fuel etc. then recover and preserve. Obtain professional advice from shore authorities re storage.

The recommended packaging material is that of nylon bags firmly tied and knotted at the neck. Then with an outer plastic bag which is secured and labelled. These are available in the kits supplied. Seek urgent guidance from shore authorities to minimise risks of losing evidence through evaporation.

The cooler the area of initial storage is likely to decrease the evaporation process.

 

NEVER store items for examination for the presence of volatile fire accelerant materials in close proximity to control samples of fire accelerant.

Clothing associated with fire accelerants

 

 

 

 

Recover with care and seek advice as above.

 

 

NEVER dry items before packaging.

Pack in a sturdy box or tin and avoid further disturbance.

 

Recommended packaging is in specialist nylon bags with an outer plastic bag.

Urgent advice to be sought from shore authorities.

 

Seek advice re storage.

 

 

 

Items obtained from the scene of a fire

Only proceed if shore authorities are not immediately available to assist.

As above.

As above.

Store control and suspect samples away from each other.

1. Fragile items (e.g. paper, books etc.)

Handle as little as possible and always with extreme care.

 

 

2. Items in which the presence of volatile fire accelerants is suspected

Obtain control samples of debris of the same type (e.g. carpet, upholstery) as that suspected to be contaminated with accelerant BUT away from the contaminated area. Obtain sample of debris from suspected contaminated area.

The recommended packaging material is that of nylon bags firmly tied and knotted at the neck with an outer plastic bag. Seek urgent guidance from shore authorities to minimise risks of losing evidence through evaporation.

 

EXPLOSIVES, FIREARMS & OTHER WEAPONS

IMPORTANT –Safety takes precedence over evidence collection.  Specialist advice MUST be sought before ANY action is taken.

 

 

Seek urgent advice from shore authorities before taking action unless to do so is critical to preserving life.

IT IS DANGEROUS PRACTICE TO LIFT A FIREARM BY THE TRIGGER GUARD

Do NOT touch unless you are familiar with firearms.  Seek specialist advice.

 

NEVER position yourself so that the gun barrel is pointing in your direction.  REMEMBER a loaded gun can be discharged when being moved or simply touched.

 

IF there is a person experienced in the handling of firearms available, get that person to make the weapon safe by unloading the weapon noting the position of any cartridges present in the chamber of a revolver, in the barrel of a shotgun, etc.

Photograph the firearm
in position before any attempt is made to
move it.

 

Tie the item with string to the inner surface of a cardboard box, so that movement in the box is restricted.  Seal and label the box correctly.

 

If possible, photograph the position of any cartridges or bullets in the chamber/ breach/magazine before removal providing it is safe to do so in the opinion of a firearmstrained person.

 

Any bullet/cartridge removed should be packed separately.  Place in a dry cardboard box and secure.

 

Place in cardboard box of other secure container and seal with adhesive tape.

NEVER INSERT A PENCIL OR OTHER OBJECT INTO THE BARREL, THIS COULD DESTROY VALUABLE EVIDENCE.

 

If it is suspected that the barrel of the firearm has been in the mouth of the victim, the muzzle (having been allowed to dry naturally) should be protected by placing an envelope loosely over it but NOT affixed with adhesive.

Handle with great care with gloves if possible, lift by placing a gloved finger at each end touching the minimum surface possible.

Weapons other than firearms

(e.g., knives, hammers, hatchets)

DO NOT attach any adhesive material to the blades or handles (this could destroy fingerprints or other evidence of value).

Place in cardboard box orother secure container and seal with adhesive tape.

Where there are items that could cut or injure, please label ’CAUTION, INJURY HAZARD’.

RECOVERY AND PROTECTION OF PROJECTILES

WARNING – see above re: blood and firearms

Any wounds resulting from a firearm injury should (subject to medical advice) be photographed before surgery.  Wherever possible a ruler or scale should be in the photograph adjacent to the wound.

Seek advice re: packaging from shore side authorities.

 

Photographs of injuries should be in colour as this will show differentiation between blood staining and blackening.  Films should not be processed unless it is essential, but retained for the relevant authorities.

As above.

 

Unless it is absolutely essential to do so, do not attempt to remove a bullet or air pellet that is imbedded in walls, doors,etc., This should be left to forensic experts.

Photograph any projectilein situ.

 

Wherever possible, seek advice from shore authorities before removal of area surrounding projectile.

 

Mark the area clearly without touching or damaging the scene.

MODEL, REPLICA AND BLANK FIRING FIREARMS

WARNING – see above

Treat as real until proved otherwise.

 

All wads and cartridge cases should be recovered.

Wrap in tissue paper (NOT cotton wool) and place in a cardboard box, seal and label.

 

For loose bullets/pellets, pack as above.  Once known to be safe, place in a polycover and lay in a box padded with tissue paper to prevent movement, and seal and label.

If unsure as to whether or not the weapon is a replica, etc., seek advice from shore authorities BEFORE packaging.

CLOTHING OF PERSON SUSPECTED OF DISCHARGING A FIREARM AND ANY VICTIM

WARNING –

See first page re: caution to be applied whendealing with body fluids

Clothing should be gently handled to preserve lightly adhering firearm discharge residue.

 

As above.  BUT blood-stained clothing must be allowed to dry naturally before packing.

Items of clothing must be individually packaged in paper sacks, sealed with adhesive tape and labelled.

Plastic sacks can be used where clothing is dry.

 

Ensure that separate people deal with the suspect and victims clothing at separate locations to eliminate the possibility of cross contamination.

Clothing of victim (crew)

As above.

As above.

As above.

DOCUMENTS (e.g., DEMANDS/RANSOM NOTES)

Hand-written documents

Obtain the ORIGINAL document, place in a polycover and if possible make a photocopy to be used as a working document (e.g., to Fax to authorities or Head Office).

Place in a clean polyfolder or polythene bag.

 

DO NOT WRITE ON OR MAKE ANY INDENTATIONS ON DOCUMENT.

 

 

 

 

 

Annex 4

 

Serious crimes

 

The following is a list of serious crimes which will require an immediate investigation by the ships master. The response should be in conjunction with the advice and support of an appropriate Law Enforcement Authority shore side until such time as the vessel comes into port or Law Enforcement officials can join the vessel at sea in order to take on the investigation.

 

Offences

 

Murder – Homicide

 

Manslaughter (e.g. single punch killing)

 

Any offence against children

 

Any Arson (any fire on board a ship at sea is life threatening)

 

Rape

 

Indecent Assault

 

Grievous Bodily Harm – Wounding

 

Robbery

 

Piracy

 

 

 

 

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