Tag Archives: Maine Marine Patrol

Elver fishermen push for higher quota, say resource isn’t endangered

Despite the abrupt end to the elver season last month due to poaching, elver fishermen continue to support an increase in Maine’s annual catch limit. The Bangor Daily News reported that more than 60 elver fishermen appeared at a hearing held Wednesday by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission — the interstate body that oversees the eel and elver fishery, among others — to consider whether to raise the quota from 9,688 pounds to 11,749 pounds. >click to read<13:47

Court dismissal ends lobster dealer’s potboiler

A saga involving allegations of skullduggery by a Mount Desert Island lobster dealer on the waters of Blue Hill Bay reached its final chapter last week in Ellsworth. A Superior Court judge dismissed a single charge against Donald Crabtree of failing to keep required records or not reporting all of his lobster purchases. The story began in the summer of 2015 with an investigation by Maine Marine Patrol officers who had heard complaints that Crabtree was buying lobsters on a barge moored outside Seal Cove in Blue Hill Bay but wasn’t filing the required landings reports with the Department of Marine Resources. >click to read< 11:39

Large-scale fraud under investigation at Rockland lobster company

State and local law enforcement agencies are investigating a suspected large-scale fraud and theft case that targeted a local seafood business. Chad W. Salvas, 39, of Rockland was arrested last May and charged with two felony theft and two felony forgery charges. At the time, the business owner of J&J Lobster told police he suspected his dock manager, Salvas, had stolen the money, according to an affidavit filed in court by the Rockland Police Department. >click to read< 17:36

Marine Patrol suspends search for missing Thomaston clammer Paul Benner

Maine Marine Patrol officers suspended the search Saturday evening for a Thomaston clammer missing since Thursday’s severe winter storm. Officers and divers were hampered by ice and slush Saturday as they searched the area of Long Cove in the vicinity of footprints believed to have been left by Paul Benner, who has not been seen since he went out clamming Thursday evening. In a statement, the marine patrol said the search “will resume in the coming days, depending on the weather.” click here to read the story 09:43

Caught on Tape: Vinalhaven Man Formally Charged with Stealing 200 Lbs Lobster, Boat

A man from Vinalhaven accused of stealing more than 200 pounds of lobsters and a boat has been indicted by a Knox County grand jury. 48-year-old Jason Marriner is charged with theft and unauthorized use of property. The Maine Marine Patrol arrested him in April. Investigators started looking into reports of thefts at the Vinalhaven co-op last fall, then again in January – along with thefts at Linda Bean’s facility, Americanus Lobster. Video, click here to watch 10:11

Lobster buyer gets his license yanked

A hearing examiner has upheld the one-year suspension of the license of a lobster buyer accused of failing to report a portion of the purchases made off a barge based in Seal Cove in Tremont. In August, Maine Marine Patrol officers summonsed Donald Crabtree Sr. of Crabtree Seafood in Brewer on a charge of violating the Department of Marine Resources’ (DMR) reporting requirements, a civil violation. Crabtree appealed his suspension. A hearing examiner last week determined that the suspension is justified, according to Sgt. Troy Dow of the marine patrol. Crabtree began using the town-owned Seal Cove Wharf as a base for his lobster business in the spring of 2015. He was mooring his 45-foot barge there and used the facility’s ramp to load bait before motoring into Blue Hill Bay to sell bait to fishermen and buy lobsters from them. The day’s catch later was offloaded at the ramp. click here to read the story 11:16

Vinalhaven fisherman accused of stealing lobsters, boat

A 48-year-old Vinalhaven fisherman was arrested Saturday, April 1, after state officials say he stole lobsters and a boat. Jason L. Marriner was arrested by the Maine Marine Patrol and charged with felony theft, unauthorized use of property and receiving stolen property. Marriner made his initial appearance Monday, April 3, in Knox County Unified Court, where Judge Susan Sparaco set bail at $500 cash or $50,000 surety. He entered no plea because one of the charges is a felony and the case had not yet been presented to a grand jury. Marriner asked to be provided a court-appointed attorney. His next court appearance is scheduled for June 1. According to an affidavit filed in court by the Maine Marine Patrol, investigators had been looking into thefts of lobster crates with lobsters inside, and outboard motorboats on three occasions in Carver’s Harbor on Vinalhaven,,, Read the story here 12:09

Marine Patrol officers Corrie Roberts, Matt Talbot recognized for heroic acts boarding lobster boat ‘Legacy’

Maine Gov. Paul R. LePage and Rear Adm. Steven D. Poulin, Commander of the First Coast Guard District, presented the Silver Lifesaving Medal and Certificate of Valor to two Maine Marine Patrol Officers at the State House today in Augusta. LePage and Poulin awarded Specialist Corrie Roberts the Silver Lifesaving Medal and Sgt. Matt Talbot the Certificate of Valor for their heroic actions in October 2015, when they received notification that the fishing vessel Legacy, a 40-foot lobster boat, was operating off Rockland in Penobscot Bay in an uncontrolled manner dangerously close to the rocky shore and local maritime traffic. continue reading the story here 11:11

Lobstermen cheered! LePage removes lobster fee increase from proposed budget

Lobstermen cheered Saturday when Gov. Paul LePage announced at the Maine Fishermen’s Forum that he was pulling an increase in the lobster fishing license fee out of his proposed state budget. The extra money was going to be used to fund new lobster research, new technology for state fisheries researchers and raises for Maine Marine Patrol officers, among other things.,, Under the proposed fee increases, a lobsterman with two deckhands would have paid $114 more a year for his license, bringing the cost of securing a license to more than $1,000 for the first time. Read the story here 16:47

Maine Lobstermans integrity is upheld in court when cleared of unlicensed fishing charge

Every once in a while, a case comes along that serves as a reminder that Maine courts, like the state’s many law enforcement agencies, are a part of what is loosely called the justice system and that most of the people who work in the courts and law enforcement agencies want to see justice done. Last week, Trenton lobsterman Jacob White found himself before Superior Court Justice Robert E. Murray facing a civil violation of the state’s marine resources laws for fishing without a lobster license last October. Also before the court was the state’s seizure of 156 pounds of lobster White landed at the Seal Cove wharf on the day Marine Patrol Officer Jeff Turcotte issued the summons for unlicensed lobstering. White decided to fight the case and, perhaps a surprise, he won. “I take pride in being a good fisherman and an honest fisherman,” White told the judge. Murray evidently agreed,,, Read the story here 17:59

A proposal intended to curb costly trap wars prompts 2-tag plan for lobster traps

1106061_371405-20120621_lobstertag_A proposal intended to curb costly trap wars would require Maine lobstermen to put two tags on traps they set outside their licensed fishing territory. Right now, every trap that is set along Maine’s 3,500-mile coast must have at least one tag, which identifies the fisherman who owns it. That 50-cent tag is the primary enforcement tool the Maine Marine Patrol uses to make sure a lobsterman is hauling only his or her own traps. Under state rules, Maine lobstermen can set up to 49 percent of their traps outside of their home fishing zone. In two zones along the coast, where fishermen are competing hardest for prime ocean bottom, lobstermen are already required to put second tags on traps dropped outside their home zone. Now, the Maine Department of Marine Resources wants to extend double-tagging to all seven lobster zones to make it easier to catch lobstermen who are fishing too many traps outside their zone. Read the story here 07:35

Dirtbag accused of abducting woman now charged with stealing lobsters, along with some other dirtbag.

A man accused of abducting a woman off the streets of Rockland is now in trouble with the Maine Marine Patrol, charged with stealing lobsters. In September, 29-year-old Shane Hall of Portland was charged with kidnapping a young woman as she walked home late at night. On Tuesday, the Maine Marine Patrol said Hall would be facing additional charges, in connection with a month-long investigation of lobster theft. 34-year-old Troy J. Woodman of Warren was also arrested as a result of the investigation by Maine Marine Patrol. Officials say Woodman is suspected of stealing lobster multiple times during September and October.  Video, read the rest here. 13:06

Reward offered for info leading to arrest in lobster boat sinking

Maine’s Operation Game Thief is offering a $2,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction of anyone involved in the sinking of Hooper’s lobster boat. “This is a senseless act that has happened to one of our own,” said Operation Game Thief Board of Directors Chairman Greg Sirpis. “The commercial lobstering community has a deep rooted tradition in Maine, and this will simply not stand. The Maine OGT Board of Directors is hopeful that someone will come forward and furnish information that will assist the Maine Marine Patrol in their investigation.” “We’re grateful for the tremendous support of the Operation Game Thief program,” said Marine Patrol Major Rene Cloutier. “While their focus is traditionally on poaching violations, their partnership with the Marine Patrol will help us pursue serious violations that undermine the ability of hard working fishermen to make a living on the water.” Tony Hooper said the whole ordeal is stressful for his family. He said he and his girlfriend just had a baby 10 days ago, and that they have “no money” because he has used up savings repairing the boat and has had limited income since mid-August. Video, read the rest here 18:02

Port Clyde lobster boat intentionally sunk for the third time since August

A lobster boat was intentionally sunk over the weekend for the third time in a little more than a month. Maine Marine Patrol Sgt. Matthew Talbot said Monday he has never seen one boat being targeted so many times. The third sinking of the Liberty, which is owned by Tony Hooper of St. George, was reported at 4 a.m. Saturday. The boat was initially sunk on Aug. 17. In that instance, the vessel went to the bottom of the harbor, causing considerable damage to its engine and electronics. The vessel was hauled out of the water and repaired. Then, shortly after being put back into service, it was cut loose from its mooring and had its hoses cut, causing it to start sinking again on Sept. 28. The boat grounded on shore and was swamped with water up to the railings, Talbot said. Read the story here 12:14

Someone sank a Maine lobsterman’s boat intentionally . Twice

me_maine_marine_patrolThe Maine Marine Patrol is investigating the sinking of a Port Clyde lobsterman’s boat on Wednesday, just days after the owner had repaired the boat after an earlier sinking on Aug. 17. Tony Hooper, 37, said his lobster boat was released from its mooring overnight, with hoses and bilge wires cut, and left to wash up on a nearby island. The sinking comes little more than a month after an earlier incident when his boat was found 30 feet underwater. “I’m doing all I can to keep my wits about me,” he said. “This is getting ridiculous.” Hooper said he had already lost around $30,000 to repairs for the boat after the first incident and weeks spent off the water. This time, he said he was lucky to have found the boat beached on a nearby island at low tide, with water in the engine. He said he does not know how much these new repairs will cost. “I’ve been losing traps all season,” Hooper said. “I’ve always had a little bit of a problem before, but not to this extent.” Read the story here 09:38

St. George lobsterman charged in sinking of rival’s boat

me_maine_marine_patrolAccording to documents filed in Knox County Unified Court, Alan B. Norwood, 47, of St. George, was charged with aggravated criminal mischief, class C, for allegedly paying two others, Vincent Hilt, 22, of Vinalhaven, and Devin Meklin, 20, of Warren, to sink a boat owned by another lobsterman, Josh Hupper. In interviews at Knox County Sheriff’s Office, Hilt and Meklin admitted to stealing the skiff and using it to get out to Hupper’s boat, which they then sank. They said Norwood had offered them $500 to sink the boat. Both have been charged with aggravated criminal mischief and theft. Norwood had told the Marine Patrol that he did not pay anyone to sink Hupper’s boat. A search warrant was issued Sept. 9 for the Marine Patrol to examine cell phone records,,, Read the story here 11:27

Two lobstermen accused of fishing violations following seven-month DMR investigation

me_maine_marine_patrolA fisherman accused of trying to secretly catch lobsters and his sternman have been charged with multiple fishing violations, according to state officials. Duston Reed, a 34 year-old lobsterman from Waldoboro, was arrested Aug. 18 by the Maine Marine Patrol and taken to the Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset. The arrests of Reed and his sternman, Jeremy Yeaton of Friendship, came after a seven-month investigation, according to a news release from the Maine Department of Marine Resources. Reed was charged with fishing lobster traps that were not marked with a buoy, fishing untagged lobster traps, falsifying physical evidence and tampering with a witness. A total of 40 unmarked, untagged traps allegedly owned by Reed were recovered by Marine Patrol officers after an investigation determined where they were being used. Read the story here 21:55

Midcoast Maine: Tensions rise with acts of vandalism within the lobster fishing community

me_maine_marine_patrolCol. Jonathan Cornish, head of , said last week that with 30 registered complaints statewide of trap molestation this year, the number of incidents of territorial disputes are about average for the season. The statewide total, eight of which were from the Tenants Harbor area, is the same as in the past few years, he said. Cornish added, however, the agency has seen a spike in complaints statewide during the past two weeks. Complaints typically rise during the peak harvesting months of September and October, he said, when lobstermen shift their traps to where they are seeing their best catches or to move further out from shore to coincide with the migration of the lobsters as the waters close to shore cool down. The marine patrol chief said there have been complaints received in the midcoast of traps being cut since the latest boat sinking. Read the story here 15:38

Maine Marine Patrol charges two men for elver violations

imageservletDana Wayne-Holmes, 61, of Gardiner was arrested on Saturday in Waldoboro after an investigation by the Maine Marine Patrol indicated that he was attempting to purchase and sell elvers without a license. Wayne-Holmes held an elver dealer license in 2015 but did not hold a dealer license for this year, Nichols said. The Maine Marine Patrol allegedly seized 13½ pounds of elvers from Wayne-Holmes worth more than $18,000 based on per pound value at the time of the violation. Also charged in the investigation was licensed harvester Irving Banks, 47 of Jefferson, who was accused of exceeding his individual elver quota, which is punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,000 fine. Read the article here 20:23

Affidavit spells out allegations against Maine elver dealer

William Sheldon is accused of encouraging elver fishermen, some of whom were undercover federal agents, to fish in prohibited areas and of buying elvers that he knew had not been legally harvested. The allegations described in the affidavit constitute violations of the federal Lacey Act, which prohibits interstate transport or transactions of any species of fish or wildlife illegally harvested or handled in any state. According to the document, anyone found guilty of knowingly violating the Lacey Act faces a potential fine of up to $250,000 and as many as five years in prison. Read the rest here 20:43

Maine’s Top Fish Cop Col. Joseph Fessenden is retiring as chief of the Maine Marine Patrol

As chief of the Maine Department of Marine Resources law enforcement wing for 20 years, Fessenden developed a reputation as an evenhanded officer and then as a leader able to build trust within an industry filled with fiercely independent operators who are often skeptical of regulators. To many people in the industry he is simply “Joe” or sometimes “Colonel Joe.” Read the rest here 09:03

3 lobstermen charged in connection with boat house fire

The State Fire Marshal’s Office arrested three men in connection with a fire two years ago that destroyed a boat house and a lobster boat inside . The fire involved a large Quonset hut boathouse; owned by Donald Simmons, a lobster fisherman. Read more here 05:20

Elver season falls short of statewide quota – Feds suspect significant illegal activity, though.

ELLSWORTH, Maine — The 2014 elver fishing season is expected to come to a close Saturday, without the statewide catch quota being reached, according to state officials. Read more here 08:25

Maine Lobsterman Charged with ‘Egregious’ Harvest

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) _ The Maine Marine Patrol is charging a 34-year-old Stonington lobsterman with what it calls the most egregious case of harvesting undersized and protected lobsters in more than 25 years. The Maine Marine Patrol says Theodore Gray possessed 269 undersized lobsters and 123 known breeding lobsters. Read more here

Elver investigation brings federal officials to Ellsworth

BDNLaw enforcement officials with the federal agency, along with others from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Maine Marine Patrol, were in Ellsworth early Thursday morning as part of the investigation, according to fishermen and local officials. Read more here  07:34

Four men arrested on elver charges in two incidents

BDNTwo men, a father and a son from Massachusetts, are facing criminal charges after Maine Marine Patrol officers found them with 31 pounds of elvers in their vehicle here over the weekend. Read more here  09:33