Mauritius has arrested the captain of a Japanese bulk carrier that ran aground off its coast, causing a devastating oil spill.
The captain was arrested along with another crew member and they've been denied bail after a court hearing, police said on Tuesday (August 18).
The MV Wakashio struck a coral reef off the Indian Ocean island nation on July 25 and began spilling oil on Aug. 6.
The oil spill spread over a vast area of endangered corals, fish and other marine life in what some scientists called the country's worst ecological disaster.
Emergency crews managed to remove most of the remaining oil before the carrier split in two on Saturday.
The Mauritius coastguard had repeatedly tried to reach the ship to warn that its course was dangerous but had received no reply, according to a maritime official with knowledge of the incident.
Local media have reported that the crew were having a birthday party on board.
Police declined to comment on the reports.
Scientists say the full impact of the spill is still unfolding, but the damage could affect Mauritius and its tourism-dependent economy for decades.
Removing the ship is likely to take months.