The relevant laws apply to the flag we are under. The flag of the ship represents the nationality of the ship, and therefore the ship is under the control of the registered country. Based on the ship’s flag, we must comply with international and maritime laws of the registered country in the open sea. That being said, USA residents may use the USA based maritime law and most maritime law is related to or under the USA. Generally speaking, the law of the sea stipulates that maritime countries essentially control their territorial waters from the shore out to a distance of 12 miles (19.3 km), the “12-mile limit.”
With respect to crimes committed in these areas, the laws of the country owning the vessel or structure upon which the crime has been committed hold sway.
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