Manhunt underway for foreign ship crew member in Townsville

A manhunt is underway for a crew member of a live exports carrier in Townsville who reportedly absconded onto dry land and breached quarantine rules.

According to Nine News, the Pakistani national disembarked on Saturday night after the ship, Polaris 3, docked at the Port of Townsville following a 17-day journey from Huanghua in China.

Queensland Police and Australian Border Force officials are looking for the man who, according to the Townsville Bulletin, is understood to be seeking asylum.

Nine News has reported the remaining crew members are also demanding to be granted asylum.

Queensland Police declined to comment on the situation. The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age has also sought comment from the Australian Border Force.

Queensland Health have said in a statement that the government agency is providing support to protect the community, and ensure the health of the officers from the agencies involved and the vessel’s crew.

“Crew members are being tested. However the risk to the community is low,” the statement reads.

The 147-metre Polaris 3 sails under the Panama flag.

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