A Greenpeace vessel captain with Islesoboro ties who was charged with piracy in a Russian court has been denied bail, Greenpeace officials said.

According to a press release from Greenpeace, Peter Willcox, captain of the Arctic Sunrise, which was seized by Russian authorities in September, was denied bail during a court appearance Monday, Oct. 14.

Willcox was charged with piracy after appearing in a Murmansk court Oct. 3. The charge stems from the Sept. 18 arrest of Willcox and other activists after two of the activists aboard the Arctic Sunrise attempted to climb the Gazprom Arctic drilling platform Prirazlomnaya to hang a banner, according to previously published reports.

Greenpeace International Executive Director Kumi Naidoo said in a prepared statement that Russian authorities do not have justification for continuing to detain the activists.

“There can be no justification for the continued detention of activists who did nothing more than express their beliefs through entirely peaceful means. They have been charged with a crime that did not happen. They are being held for something nobody thinks they actually did,” Naidoo said in the statement.”

According to previously published reports, lawyers acting on behalf of Greenpeace International had filed appeals with the Murmansk court regarding the continued detention of the accused, according to the organization.

If convicted on the piracy charge, Willcox could face up to 15 years in prison under Russian law.

Republican Journal reporter Ben Holbrook can be reached at 338-3333 or at bholbrook@courierpublicationsllc.com.