Smuggler Marine and Orion have thanked boaties across the country for their support following a Court of Appeal decision in August, which will free up production of amphibious boats in New Zealand.

The Court of Appeal decision found that the High Court judge made key errors in 2018, in finding Orion, Smuggler and others had infringed Sealegs’ copyright.

The Court of Appeal agreed with the appellants’ contention that Sealegs’ approach was “copyright heresy”. The ruling upholds New Zealand copyright law and confirms unequivocally that Sealegs does not own the concept of three-legged amphibious technology.

Directors of Smuggler Marine, David and Pauline Pringle, along with Orion Manager Darren Leybourne, acknowledge the support of many NZ Marine Industry member companies who stuck by them in what has been a long and tough battle to provide the New Zealand boating community with the choices they are entitled to.

“The court’s decision has supported our view that Orion’s amphibious technology is different to anything else currently available, and this is what the case was all about.

“With this now settled, we will be contacting the long list of people both in NZ and overseas who have been waiting for up to three years to put in their order for an amphibious Smuggler boat with an Orion system, and we will return to building amphibious boats immediately,” said David Pringle.