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This Russian cruise ship Lyubov Orlova has been held in St. John's since late September. ((Glenn Payette/ CBC))

The remaining crew members of a seized Russian ship that has been tied up in St. John’s harbour for three months are heading home in time for Christmas.

The Russian government has agreed to pay to fly the nine remaining Lyubov Orlova crew members home on Sunday.

Other crew members have been travelling home with help from their families and friends.

The Lyubov Orlova was seized by Canadian officials on Sept. 24 because its owner, Oleg Uliyanchenko, owes more than $250,000 to a Canadian company.

Crew members said they were told the ship would be sold to a Norwegian company but the sale was never finalized.

The crew of 49 Russians and two Ukrainians was also owed more than $350,000 in wages.

The ship's captain said only the Salvation Army and the people of St. John's helped the crew members while they were stranded in St. John’s.

The Lyubov Orlova was used during the summer for adventure tourism trips to northern Labrador.

No passengers were on the ship when it was seized.