Why Is This Indicted Seafood Mogul Still Buying More Fishing Boats?

carlos rafaelCarlos “the Codfather” Rafael is not letting his upcoming federal trial for mislabeling seafood slow down his massive commercial-fishing business. While fishermen across New England marvel at how Rafael is allowed to continue working while facing a 27-count indictment, public records suggest that the indicted seafood mogul might even be expanding his fleet of more than 40 vessels. Documents filed with the Massachusetts secretary of state’s office show that on May 16, Rafael’s wife, Conceicao, created a company called Nemesis LLC with the mission “to engage in fishing and shellfishing of every nature and description.” Then, on June 24, two days after Rafael’s lawyer appeared in court to schedule his January 2017 trial date, Nemesis bought a fishing vessel previously called the Jamie & Ashley. Read the story here 12:19

2 Responses to Why Is This Indicted Seafood Mogul Still Buying More Fishing Boats?

  1. DickyG says:

    Very entertaining article, but it misses a most important
    cause of such alleged illegal activity: namely the privatization and onsolidation scam of Individual Transferable Quota management programs or “catch shares”.

    The imposition of this management scheme in 2010 on the Northeast Groundfishery resulted after millions were spent by the Environmental Defense Fund and by NOAA to fulfill this commodification of the fishery. It has eliminated over half of the family-owned and family funded fishing operations. Such fishing operations consisting of one or two vessels per family, had more
    than adequate level of “accountability” of catches and landings. Such small operations are cross-checked at least 5 different ways, by 3 different government agencies.

    Also, it’s hard to get independent fishermen to agree on anything no less get them to all risk their future by smuggling a few hundred dollars worth of fish, which would be about the illegitimate gain on their small scale landings. Large “vertically integrated” corporate style companies, on the other hand, rely on the integrity of one or a few individuals to do the right thing. They operate in volumes that can invite and then easily obfuscate some sleight of hand dealings

    NOAA’s and various eco-NGO’s campaigns of pushing catch shares has resulted in opening the door wide to create these corporate style fish companies. Any market-cap corporation or any well-funded ambitious individual or group of investors is invited to own more quota then they are able or willing to manage responsibly and legitimately—and as Wall Street has taught us: the bigger, the less accountable or “Too Big to Monitor”?

    Also, this New Bedford matter is not “an extreme case” it’s happening worldwide, and will continue to happen with large conglomerate fish quota “holding companies” such as Pacific Andes’ China Fishery—a huge company of factory trawler/freezer ships notorious for illegitimate fishing and is currently in Chap. 11 dodging investors. Corporate free-for-alls and political skullduggery can often be found where fish have been commoditized and put in the hands of a “Too Big to Monitor” business entity which is concerned solely with bottom line quarterly profits.

    Carlos owned many boats and licenses long before the imposition of catch shares, but this type of alleged mismanagement is accelerated, if not encouraged, by a consolidation encouraging catch shares regime.

    To analyze causes, look to the catch shares “business plan” as a major culprit, creating an environment that fosters consolidation and monopolization and all the administrative chicanery that accompanies those mega-corporate style ambitions.

  2. DickyG says:

    Very entertaining article, but it misses a most important
    cause of such alleged illegal activity: namely the privatization and consolidationscam of Individual Transferable Quota management programs or “catch shares”.

    The imposition of this management scheme in 2010 on the Northeast Groundfishery resulted after millions were spent by the Environmental Defense Fund and by NOAA to fulfill this commodification of the fishery. It has eliminated over half of the family-owned and family funded fishing operations.

    Such family fishing operations consisting of one or two vessels per family, have more than adequate levels of “accountability” of their catches and landings. And small operations are cross-checked at least 5 different ways, by 3 different government agencies.

    Also, it’s hard to get independent fishermen to agree on anything no less get them to all risk their future by smuggling a few hundred dollars worth of fish, which would be about the illegitimate gain on their small scale landings.

    Large “vertically integrated” corporate style companies, on the other hand, rely on the integrity of one or a few individuals to do the right thing. They operate in volumes that can invite and then easily obfuscate some sleight of hand dealings

    NOAA’s and various eco-NGO’s campaigns of pushing catch shares has resulted in opening the door wide to create these corporate style fish companies. Under this management regime any market-cap corporation or any well-funded ambitious individual, or group of investors, is invited to own more quota then they might be able or willing to manage responsibly and legitimately—and as Wall Street has taught us: the bigger, the less accountable or “Too Big to Monitor”?

    Also, this New Bedford matter is not “an extreme case” it’s happening worldwide, and will continue to happen with large conglomerate fish quota “holding companies” such as Pacific Andes’ China Fishery—a huge company of factory trawler/freezer ships notorious for illegitimate fishing and is currently in Chap. 11 dodging investors.

    Corporate free-for-alls and political skullduggery can often be found where fish have been commoditized and put in the hands of a “Too Big to Monitor” business entity which is concerned solely with bottom line quarterly profits.

    Carlos owned many boats and licenses long before the imposition of catch shares, but this type of alleged mismanagement is accelerated, if not encouraged, by a consolidation encouraging catch shares regime.

    To analyze causes, look to the catch shares “business plan” as a major culprit, creating an environment that fosters consolidation and monopolization and all the administrative chicanery that accompanies those mega-corporate style ambitions.

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