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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Sailormongering is the practice of boarding a ship approaching or newly arrived in port without the permission of its master, and inciting members of its crew to desert their posts and come ashore by tempting them with prostitutes and alcohol. The intention behind the activity might be to subject the unguarded vessel to piracy, hold the inebriated sailors hostage or simply drum up business for local taverns and brothels. At the time when the practice was common, it was often accomplished by sending prostitutes carrying large quantities of alcohol on to the targeted ships to serve as lures; those arranging for this to occur might be described as having committed the action in addition to those actually boarding the ships.

Although statutory prohibitions on the practice remain in jurisdictions such as the United States, the offence is effectively obsolete. The relevant law in that country dates from 1872, but the last successful prosecution under it occurred in 1890, in the case of United States v Sullivan.[1]

Greenpeace charge

In 2003, the United States Justice Department prosecuted Greenpeace under the 1872 statute for boarding a ship that was importing over $10 million worth of Brazilian mahogany.[2] The case garnered widespread ridicule and was dismissed on the third day of the trial, after 1.5 days of testimony.[3][4]


  1. ^ Federal Reporter, Vol. 42, United States v Sullivan. Same v Scott. (Circuit Court, D. Oregon. October 8, 1890.), pp. 602-605 (
  2. ^ Liptak, Adam (October 11, 2003). "Typical Greenpeace Protest Leads to an Unusual Prosecution". The New York Times. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  3. ^ "U.S. Suit Against Greenpeace Dismissed". Los Angeles Times. May 20, 2004. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  4. ^ Roig-Franzia, Manuel (May 20, 2004). "Judge Dismisses Greenpeace Charges". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
This page was last edited on 19 June 2018, at 03:53
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