Carlos “The Codfather” Rafael’s trial could have huge stakes

Indicted fishing magnate Carlos Rafael controls nearly one-fifth of the harbor’s commercial fleet and had permits worth about $80 million last year, according to public records and local interviews. The size and scope of Rafael’s fishing business indicate a significant chunk of New Bedford’s waterfront economy could be at stake should Rafael stand trial in January 2017. He faces federal charges tied to an alleged, multi-year scheme involving illegally caught fish, bags of cash from a wholesale buyer in New York City and a smuggling operation to Portugal, via Logan International Airport in Boston. An initial survey of Rafael’s fishing permits, vessels and the corporations behind them, along with local data and interviews, provides a glimpse into an operation that has become a flashpoint for broader debates about industry regulation and oversight. Read the article here 09:08