In this Empire file photo, a Princess Cruises ship is seen docked in Juneau on Aug. 25, 2021. The U.S. Department of Justice announced Wednesday the company pleaded guilty to violating the terms of its probabtion stemming from a 2017 conviction for illegal wastewater dumping. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)

In this Empire file photo, a Princess Cruises ship is seen docked in Juneau on Aug. 25, 2021. The U.S. Department of Justice announced Wednesday the company pleaded guilty to violating the terms of its probabtion stemming from a 2017 conviction for illegal wastewater dumping. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)

Princess Cruises pleads guilty to probation violation

U.S. Dept. of Justice says company violated probation terms.

Princess Cruises pleaded guilty to a second violation of probation imposed in a 2017 criminal conviction for environmental crimes because it failed to establish and maintain an independent internal investigative office, the U.S. Department of Justice announced.

In a statement Wednesday, the DOJ said Princess was ordered to pay an additional $1 million and will be required to undertake remedial measures to ensure the company its parent company, Carnival Cruise Lines, establish and maintain an independent internal investigative office.

“Princess admitted that internal investigators had not been allowed to determine the scope of their investigations, and that draft internal investigations had been impacted and delayed by management,” DOJ said.

Princess was fined $40 million in 2017 for illegal discharge of oil-contaminated water and intentional acts to cover it up, the DOJ said. In 2019, Princess was convicted of six probation violations and fined an additional $20 million, according to DOJ. The Justice Department said two of the violations in the 2019 case involved interfering with the court’s supervision of probation by sending undisclosed teams to ships to prepare them for the independent inspections required during probation.

[City considers changing plan to allow cruise dock, more shore power]

“Documents filed in court showed that one purpose of the vessel visit programs was to avoid adverse findings by the independent outside auditors working on behalf of the court,” DOJ said.

The 2017 conviction resulted from a dumping violation that occurred in waters off the coast of England in 2013, DOJ said, and probation violations occurred while Carnival ships were operating in U.S. waters.

In an email, Carnival spokesperson Roger Frizzle said the company had been working in good faith throughout the course of its probation and has implemented changes outlined in the court order.

“The company undertook a wide range of specific actions upon learning of the issue several years ago and continues to focus on this area as a top priority,” Frizzle said.

Environmental group Friends of the Earth lauded the DOJ’s actions but said in a statement regulators need to do more to hold companies accountable.

“It is time for the federal government to step up and enact stronger pollution standards as well as independent monitors for the entire cruise industry, so these criminal environmental violations don’t happen again,” said Marcie Keever, Oceans and Vessels Program Director at FOTE.

Alaska’s Department of Environmental Conservation has fined cruise ship companies, including Princess, for air and water quality violations in Juneau.

• Contact reporter Peter Segall at psegall@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @SegallJnuEmpire.

More in News

A Princess Cruise Line ship is docked in Juneau on Aug. 25, 2021. (Michael Lockett / Juneau Empire File)
Ships in Port for the week of May 22, 2022

Here’s what to expect this week.

Juneau's incumbent delegation to the Alaska State Legislature from left to right: Representative Andi Story, D-Juneau; State Sen. Jesse Kiehl, D-Juneau, and Rep. Sara Hannan, D-Juneau. All three lawmakers have filed for re-election and are so far running unopposed. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire, Courtesy photo / Jesse Kiehl, Michael Lockett / Juneau Empire)
Local lawmakers all seek reelection

June 1, filing deadline.

Coast Guard aircrews medevaced two people from Dry Bay Airstrip, approximately 30 miles Southeast of Yakutat, Alaska, after their plane crashed, May 25, 2022. (Courtesy photo / Coast Guard District 17)
Three medevaced after plane crash near Yakutat

All four aboard were injured, three critically so.

The author’s appreciation for steelhead has turned into something like reverence considering what’s happening to populations in the Lower 48 and Canada. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)
I Went to the Woods: Silent steel

“You forget most of what ends up in the freezer, but those steelhead, they stick with you.”

Senate President Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna, seen here in this June 16, 2021, file photo, announced Wednesday he will not seek relelection in the Alaska State Senate, where he has served since 2013. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire file)
Senate president says he won’t run again

“Honor and a privilege.”

Hoonah’s Alaska Youth Stewards helped make improvements to Moby and water the plants in summer 2021. (Courtesy Photo / Jillian Schuyler)
Resilient Peoples & Place: Moby the Mobile Greenhouse cultivates community

It presents opportunities to grow food knowledge and skills.

It's a police car until you look closely and see the details don't quite match. (Juneau Empire File / Michael Penn)
Police calls for Thursday, May 26, 2022

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Most Read