A Russian ship that's been tied up in St. John's for almost a year and a half has finally been sold and is expected to leave the city's harbour later this winter.
The Lyubov Orlova was seized by Canadian authorities in 2010.
Last November, a federal court appointed Gibson Canada Global Incorporated of Montreal to sell the vessel. An officer of the court told CBC News Wednesday that an offer to buy the vessel has been accepted.
The deal should close next week and the Orlova is expected to leave St. John's by the end of February.
The officer of the court said he could not disclose the amount the vessel was sold for; who has purchased it; or where it will go next.
The ship was arrested in St. John’s after a creditor put a lien on the vessel. A Russian company, Locso Shipping, owned the 90-metre Orlova.
At the time of the ship’s arrest, the Russian-based company owed Cruise North Expeditions $250,000.
The Russian company also owed 51 crewmembers on the vessel more than $300,000 in wages.
The motion to appoint a sheriff to sell the vessel was applauded by the St. John’s Port Authority.
The Orlova has accrued more than $200,000 in berthing fees since it was tied up.
Depending on the purchase price and how much money is left over after prioritized creditors, such as former crewmembers and Gibson Canada are paid, the port authority could recover some of the money it is owed.
Before it was seized, the Lyubov Orlova was used for adventure tourism trips to northern Labrador. No passengers were on the ship when it was seized.