The Judgement of the Spanish Supreme Court on the Prestige oil spill – Spain cannot have it both ways

Maritime Cyprus

The long-awaited judgment of the Spanish Supreme Court (Criminal Chamber) in the Prestige matter was handed down on 14 January 2016.


In a first judgment, the Spanish Supreme Court reverses part of the decision of the Superior Court of La Coruña and in a second judgment, holds the Master of the vessel, Apostolos Ionnais Mangouras, liable of a criminal offence against the environment resulting in catastrophic environmental damage.  The Master is sentenced to two years’ imprisonment and is also held liable to pay a fine of Euro 10 per day for twelve months and to pay a twelfth of the legal costs of the First Instance proceedings.

The second judgment holds the Master liable to pay damages resulting from the oil spill and holds the owners of the Prestige, MARE SHIPPING INC, vicariously liable for the damages. Owner’s P&I Club, The London Steamship Owners’ Mutual…

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