KETCHIKAN, Alaska – A jury found Greenpeace (search) guilty Monday on two misdemeanor criminal negligence (search) charges that were filed after the group's ship entered Alaska (search) waters for an anti-logging campaign without required paperwork.
Greenpeace's ship came to Alaska to conduct an anti-logging campaign in the Tongass National Forest. The ship was carrying more than 70,000 gallons of "petroleum products" at the time, court papers said.
Under state law, a large non-tank vessel must file an oil spill response plan application five days before entering state waters. Greenpeace had not, but said the oversight was quickly corrected.
State regulators charged Greenpeace, ship Capt. Arne Sorensen and ship agent Willem Beekman with multiple counts of misdemeanor criminal negligence last July for not filing the spill plan or having proof of financial responsibility in case of a spill.
The six-person state District Court jury convicted Greenpeace on two counts of failing to have the oil spill prevention plan and acquitted the group on the two counts of failing to obtain a certificate of financial responsibility.
Sorensen was convicted on three counts, and Beekman was acquitted on all charges.
Criminal negligence carries a maximum $200,000 fine for an organization, and a year in prison and a $10,000 fine for an individual.