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§ 721. Vessels stranded on foreign coasts

Consuls and vice consuls, in cases where vessels of the United States are stranded on the coasts of their consulates respectively, shall, as far as the laws of the country will permit, take proper measures, as well for the purpose of saving the vessels, their cargoes and appurtenances, as for storing and securing the effects and merchandise saved, and for taking inventories thereof; and the merchandise and effects saved, with the inventories thereof so taken, shall, after deducting therefrom the expenses, be delivered to the owners. No consul or vice consul shall have authority to take possession of any such merchandise, or other property, when the master, owner, or consignee thereof is present or capable of taking possession of the same.
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