New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered the release of Italian merchant navy ship Enrica Lexie which was seized after two of its marines had allegedly killed two Indian fishermen off Kerala coast in February this year.
   
The Apex Court also allowed four marines and six crew members on board it to leave Indian shores after the Italian government and the ship owner assured it that they will be available when required by Indian legal authorities.
   
A bench headed by Justice R M Lodha directed the ship owner to execute a bond of Rs three crore before the registrar general of the Kerala High Court as a surety for the presence of crew members and the vessel whenever required by the Indian authorities.
   
The bench directed that the crew members should be made themselves available before the authorities within five weeks after receiving summons or notice. It also directed that the vessel be brought before the legal authorities within seven weeks after receiving summons or notice.

The bench, however, made it clear that its order would not affect the right of the Kerala government to conduct the investigation and the prosecution of two marines accused of killing two fishermen.

(Agencies)