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A tugboat was waiting on an all-clear signal just outside the harbor.

The local patrols were distracted by Max's contribution of rum and hookers and were occupied most of that full moon night.

Once all of the tumblers clicked into place, the tugboat was called into play. The tug backed up to the vessel and secured its lines while Max's crew torch-cut the anchor chain. (A tugboat was required since the ship had sat for several months in the Miragoâne port and the engines were not serviceable.)

Success was in sight as the evening progressed when another tugboat approached to relieve the first. Hardberger's crew checked with the towing company, however, and the second tugboat proved to be false. They called the Bahamian coast guard and the second tug was arrested for attempted piracy. Max reported that the second tugboat was sent by the confiscation mastermind after he learned that the boat had been repossessed.

A Bahamian court upheld the repossession and ordered the vessel to be sold to pay the mortgage on the boat.

The Hero

Max is a man who has worn many hats in his life. A pilot, who used to transport the "guests of honor" for funeral homes to their final resting place, an English teacher at a Louisiana high school, an author of several published books, a filmmaker, a stuntman, and an attorney and a businessman.

Ironic as it may seem, he now owns most of the port that was the place of this adventure, just one of a dozen-plus Caribbean extractions. His adventures are under consideration for a motion picture, and Max says that he wants Daniel Craig to play himself.

In his early 60's Max is far from being retired. He is currently arranging for a vessel extraction... in Somalia.

More info on his exploits and publications: MaxHardberger.com and vesselextractions.com.

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