MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE AND JUDICIAL SALE OF THE “PRETTY SCENE” IN SOUTH AFRICA
During 2017, Bowmans assisted the mortgagee bank in protecting its security interests by foreclosing on the mt “Pretty Scene” in South Africa in order cleanse the ship of all claims and recoup its losses. The Bowmans foreclosure was a part of a bigger scheme in terms of which the Bank sought to exercise its rights under a fleet mortgage. The ship had been under arrest in Durban for 18 months in respect of an associated ship claim for over USD70 million. It was not possible for the owners to put up security to release the ship and a protracted dispute between the owners and the arresting party, Galsworthy Ltd was likely to drag on for some time. The ship was losing value which impacted on the Bank’s security interests. The matter was a contentious foreclosure in that Galsworthy Ltd vigorously opposed the Bank’s mortgage claim on the basis that the Bank and owner were working together to dispose of the Galsworthy claim. The court disagreed and confirmed the Mortgagee’s claim which outranked that of Galswothy’s.