sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Australia Cruising USA Cruising Canada Boats for Sale Sail-World Racing Photo Gallery FishingBoating
Video Gallery Newsletters
Sail-World.com : Yachts impounded in Mexico - the agony goes on...
Yachts impounded in Mexico - the agony goes on...

'Coral Marina, photo by Adam Stuckey'    .

American cruising sailor Tom Spencer has told his personal story of the arrival of tax investigators into the Coral Marina in Mexico last November. He said he didn’t think much about it , but noticed that inspectors were checking all the boats in the marina. He didn't dream that was was taking place would have such far-reaching and damaging repercussions.

What was taking place would soon confound all visiting cruising sailors, some of whom had been visiting Mexico in their boats for many years. Mexican tax authorities impounded more than 300 foreign-owned yachts, and some of them remain tied up by under the embargo today, infuriating owners.


Richard Spindler, publisher of Latitude 38, a monthly magazine for sailors, also had his yacht impounded and led a publicity campaign aimed at freeing the boats.

'I had one gentleman come by the boat and ask to see some papers,' Spencer told Kansas Evening News. 'I said, ‘What do you want to see?’ He said, ‘Where’s the serial number of the boat?’ I said I didn’t know, just look around.'

The problem, Spindler said, is that the Mexican government agents had little knowledge of sailing boats, unaware that those built before 1972 were not required to have hull identification numbers. Even after that date, vessels built in Europe or Asia often don’t have such a number.

The impounding of 337 mostly foreign-owned sailboats and yachts at 11 marinas around Mexico on Nov. 26 has affected not only hundreds of American and Canadian boat owners but also marinas, crews, dry docks and, more broadly, Mexico’s reputation as a safe and reliable destination for boat lovers.

Nearly half the vessels have subsequently been freed. But at least 190 remain impounded, tied up in red tape and confusion in raids that initially seemed aimed at rooting out tax cheats and boat thieves.

Like many retired American sailors cruising Mexican waters, Spencer had difficulty communicating in Spanish with the federal tax agent the morning he came asking questions. But some things needed no explanation. Mexican marines posted at each wharf 'had their big rifles out,' and tax agents seemed to mean business.

Spencer started to worry. He contacted the person who surveyed his cutter rig when he bought it back in 1999, asking where he could find the Hull Identification Number, equivalent to a VIN on an automobile.

'He said it’s probably on the starboard side of the hull,' Spencer recalled.

It was too late. Spencer’s 48-foot boat, Symphony, like 336 other mostly foreign-owned sailboats and yachts, was legally impounded, unable to leave harbor.

'There were four dinghies that they also impounded,' said Arnulfo Espinoza Rodriguez, the dock master at the Coral Marina. They were the exception. Most of the seized boats were large vessels, a few worth millions of dollars, but 'the vast majority are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.'

Many boat owners were not at the marina that day. Since the marina is on the Pacific coast of the Baja Peninsula, only 70 miles south of the U.S. border, owners often leave vessels docked here while living elsewhere.

Moreover, boat owners are not required to pay tax or duty if they have a 10-year Temporary Import Permit, which costs around $50.

Marina owners naturally grew incensed at the harm the seizures were doing to their industry, and the lengthy delays in releasing impounded boats. Some boat owners are known to have left in the dead of night, not willing to stay around at Mexico's pleasure.

Many boat owners won't speak out about the problem, fearing reprisals. 'Until the boat is safe and in my hands I will not breathe a sigh of relief nor will I speak to anybody about my experience,' one Canadian owner said recently.


by Sail-World Cruising round-up


  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=119936

2:30 AM Sat 8 Mar 2014GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







Sail-World Cruising News - local and the World











Barnacle Busting by Neil and Ley Langford,


From Penguins to Polar Bears by Cherie Winner,








NCI granted dedicated VHF Channel by National Coastwatch,


Positive news for cruising boats in Greece by The Cruising Association,
























Risks to penguin populations continues by British Antarctic Survey,




Follow these tips when anchoring by Alex and Daria Blackwell,






Galley Guys meet the Spice Lady by Greg Nicoll, Andy Adams and John Armstrong,




If all else fails read the instructions!! by Stuart Carruthers, RYA Cruising Manager,




Phuket Yacht Show: new kid on the block taking on PIMEX? *Feature by Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia and Phuket Yacht Show,


Sea and Summit leg seven - Rain fails to dampen Tash's spirits
RYA meets with Government over latest red diesel development
Endangered species are like Movie Stars - Charlie Sheens and Tom Hanks
Halong becomes a Super Typhoon; Japan in harm's way
Vanuatu Customs making life easier for visiting cruising yachts
Tropical Storm Bertha expected to become a typhoon
Flags at Sea, an infographic by John Tissott
Cruising lessons from ocean racers
Procedures set out for waterborne visitors to Vanuatu
17-year-old RNLI volunteer saves child in first rescue mission + Video
Teen names latest RNLI Shannon class lifeboat in Poole + Video
RYA Sea Survival Handbook – 2nd edition now available
Fascinating opportunity with OceansWatch
Lobster Thermidor - Making Julia proud
Fake GPS signals detected when cruising the high seas
Our new Cruising Editor editor remembers his first offshore adventure
World Odyssey Race - Bringing back the Corinthian spirit
Blue Planet Odyssey - Jimmy Cornell playing catch up on North West Pa
Blue Planet Odyssey Rally - Raising climate change awareness
All Points Rally departs this November
World ARC 2014 reaches Australia   
Venezuelan Port Control lift recent port restrictions.   
Seismic survey ship operating north of Aruba and Curacao   
A Mooring in Iceberg Alley   
Boaters urged to speak up on 15%ethanol proposal   
Predictwind helps you pick the best time to depart   
IMB reports worrying trend of piracy hijacks in Southeast Asia   
Watch this whale lift a Kayak clear out of the water   
World ARC reaches half-way point in Australia   
Northern Scotland: Voyage to Orkney and Shetland Isles (Part 2) *Feature   
Vietnam Marina Development: ONE°15 Vung Ro Bay Marina Resort   
Drowning or electric shock? What you need to know to help save a life   
Costa Concordia - the $2.25 billion salvage operation ready to begin   
Northern Scotland: Voyage to Orkney and Shetland Isles, more photos *Feature   
Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - New location and attractions   
Long Island waters could become more taxing this summer   
4.8 million Legos all at sea   
No tiller sailing - how to steer using just the sails + Video   
Tranquil, colourful and funky, Genoa Bay is a must stop for West Coast *Feature   
Scientist pioneered tracer to reveal hidden ocean flows   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph, contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW CRU NH
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT