Although it sounds like it came from an action movie, Australian authorities say the drama was out in real life over the weekend.
On Saturday morning, a cargo ship heading to the port city of Newcastle in New South Wales, saw a boat with water in the Yamba coast, the Australian Border Force said. To get the boat to Newcastle, the crew attached a tow line and took the yacht’s skipper – a 31-year-old man – on board.
As the ship reached its destination later that evening, the tow line carrying the boat had fallen, and the boat – and the man – was found to be missing.
Officials searched the area for the missing man but were unable to locate him, the Border Force said.
On Monday – two days after the man disappeared – NSW police and Australian Border Force (ABF) officials searched the dogs in a cargo ship and found a man hidden in an air-conditioning unit.
Authorities found the man had violated his bail in a sexual assault case, saying he had deliberately cut the boat loose and planned to stay aboard the ship until he sailed from Australia to Malaysia.
Authorities arrested the man and seized 4,435 Australian dollars (about $ 3,070) in cash and a knife, which is under forensic examination. He is charged with violating bail and will appear in court on Wednesday, Border Force officials said.