Tag Archives: poaching

Coast Guard interdicts lancha crews illegally fishing US waters

Coast Guard law enforcement crews detected and interdicted five Mexican lancha boat crews engaged in illegal fishing in federal waters off the coast of southern Texas, Saturday.,, Coast Guard Sector/Air Station Corpus Christi has intercepted 22 lanchas and interdicted 15 lanchas north of the U.S./Mexico Maritime Border since Oct. 1, 2019. 3 Photo’s, >click to read< 17:59

Environmental officers outnumbered by complaints of poaching.

Using two undercover officers posing as fishermen, environmental police focused their efforts on the canal, and on Sunday they seized 50 illegally caught striped bass and issued $8,000 in citations to 14 anglers. “The violators are both recreational and commercial fishermen,” said Environmental Police Maj. Patrick Moran, who said the sheer numbers for a one-day action were incredible. “Poachers are becoming more daring, devious and furtive, and it’s a daily struggle to figure out the newest scheme to skirt the fisheries laws,” Moran wrote in an email. >click to read<17:11

Inside the secret, million-dollar world of baby eel trafficking

In the parking lot of an Irving gas station in Aulac, N.B., not far from the Nova Scotia border, Curtis Kiley popped the trunk of a Toyota Corolla. Inside was a white bucket containing what looked like a giant hairball, the type that might be pulled from a bathtub drain. Except it was alive — a wriggling, slithering mess. This was just an initial sample Kiley had brought to show a prospective black-market buyer, a woman he knew only through text message as “Danielle.” He was ultimately hoping to unload up to 300 kilograms of the tiny creatures, a huge haul worth $1.3 million on the open market, but one he was offering at a steep discount. Moments later, Kiley’s world turned from dollar signs to handcuffs. >click to read<10:40

Fish cops’ keep eyes on the water

When too much of a resource is taken from area bays and beaches — a common occurrence when it comes to clams and crabs — it can put the species at risk of declining or disappearing. Preventing that is an ongoing battle in the Puget Sound region and requires having eyes on the water. >Click to read<11:27

Fisheries minister casts line to Ottawa for lobster poaching task force

Fisheries Minister Keith Colwell says he’s “very concerned” about the possibility of violence related to lobster poaching in southwest Nova Scotia and he’s proposing an idea he says worked in the past. Last week, representatives from several lobster associations raised the issue of poaching on the eve of the season’s close, saying they feared an escalation of tensions that last year saw several boats set on fire and threats exchanged between fishermen. >click to read<14:29

Illegal shellfish trafficking ring caught on video

Pierce County prosecutors have charged several men in a seafood trafficking case, including the former Natural Resources Director for the Tulalip Tribes. According to case documents, Joseph Hatch Sr. and his son, Joseph Hatch Jr., poached at least a thousand pounds of Dungeness crab and shrimp, selling the shellfish over several months in 2015. Hatch is a Tulalip tribal member and was serving in his role as head of natural resources while officers monitored his movement over five months. Video, >click to read<10:51

Maine Harvester Enters Guilty Plea, Maine Dealers Sentenced for Illegally Trafficking American Eels

Yarann Im was sentenced to six months imprisonment and three years of supervised release and Thomas Choi was sentenced to six months in prison with a fine of $25,000 today for trafficking juvenile American eels (also called “elvers” or “glass eels”) in violation of the Lacey Act, following a hearing in federal district court in Portland, Maine. The sentence was announced by Acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey H. Wood for the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division. This sentencing follows the entry of a guilty plea on December 12, 2017, by Albert Cray,,, click here to read the press release 18:51

D.E.C. Ticketed Montauk Anglers for Dumping Fish

Marine enforcement officers from the State Department of Environmental Conservation, on patrol in Montauk Harbor on Aug. 31, saw what they estimated was hundreds of pounds of fish being thrown overboard from a Montauk party boat and wound up ticketing eight people, including the boat’s captain, Keith Williams. According to a D.E.C. spokeswoman, the officers approached the 75-foot Fin Chaser, based on Star Island, and ordered the anglers to stop what they were doing. Their orders were ignored, she said. The party boat’s customers were cited for possessing too many black sea bass and porgies, undersized black sea bass and summer flounder, and for failure to stop dumping upon command. click here to read the story 08:25

As eels grow in value, US government clamps down on poaching

Law enforcement authorities have launched a crackdown on unlicensed eel fishermen and illicit sales along the East Coast.,, In Maine, more than 400 licensed fishermen make their living fishing for elvers in rivers such as the Penobscot in Brewer and the Passagassawakeag in Belfast every spring. They say law enforcement is vital to protecting the eels and the volatile industry. Randy Bushey, of Steuben, has been fishing for elvers since 1993. He said he saw his income balloon from as little as $5,000 per year in the 1990s to more than $350,000 in 2012. He said tighter quotas mean he’s earning less these days, and in the most recent season he made about $57,000. “I’ve seen the best, and I’ve seen the worst,” Steuben said. “I want to see it preserved. I want to see it straightened out.” click here to read the story 08:16

The price to pay for spearing 320 spiny lobsters was a trip to jail Sunday

The price to pay for spearing 320 spiny lobsters was a trip to jail Sunday — and hundreds of charges for seven out-of-state men. The men, who were pulled over in a rented boat on the oceanside of the Vaca Cut Bridge around 4:30 p.m. by Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers, also had four out-of-season stone crab claws and eight fish fillets on the boat, according to FWC spokesman Officer Bobby Dube. On the boat was a bag containing 137 out-of-season wrung spiny lobster tails — 117 of which were undersized — the stone crab claws and fish, Dube said. click here to read the story 11:37

Striper Poaching Season Begins in Maryland!

On April 5, 2017, Maryland DNR reported that officers had charged nine men with possessing 87 striped bass from the waters of Dorchester County. On Saturday, an officer watched as four men caught striped bass and hid them in storm drains on Fishing Creek Bridge. The officer recovered 14 fish. Charged with possessing striped bass in a closed season were: Juan Manuel Bravo, 34, of Hyattsville; Emerson DeJesus Vargas Campos, 26, of Riverdale; Jairo Dario Ramierez, 22, of Upper Marlboro; and Elmer Antonio Castillo Araniva, 23, of Upper Marlboro. The next night, officers watched as five men from Prince George’s County caught fish and placed them in the trunk of an SUV. When officers stopped the vehicle and searched it, they found 73 striped bass in a duffel bag. There’s more! Lots more! continue reading the story here 17:03

Illegal mud crab fishermen targeted as price reaches $70 a kilogram

4795980-3x2-940x627Authorities warn of stern action against those caught illegally catching mud crabs in New South Wales. With the crustaceans selling at $70 a kilogram, it is proving a lucrative crime for those offloading onto the black market. The NSW Department of Primary Industries’ director of fisheries compliance Patrick Tully said the area of most concern was unlicensed fishermen. “It’s illegal, unregulated and unreported,” he said. “We’re concerned that there are people using too many crab traps, not marking them so they can’t be found, and then selling them on what’s essentially the black market.” “At $70 a kilo one crab could be more than $70, they can grow to quite big animals. “It’s what we used to call the ‘shamateur’ — not a licensed fisherman, not really a recreational fisherman, just that person in the middle who is exploiting the resource at the expense of others.” Read the story here 15:34

Man arrested for poaching 153 black sea bass

t1200-IMG_2296A Rhode Island man fishing out of season was out of luck after being busted with 153 black sea bass at Mattapoisett Town Wharf on Wednesday. Mattapoisett Harbormaster Jill Simmons became suspicious of Belmiro Baptista, 65, of Patwucket, Rhode Island after helping him attach his boat to his truck. Baptista told her he had a commercial fishing license and was fishing for scup. He also told her he caught five or six sea bass, “for eat,” said the Portuguese native. He later said he had eight bass. Simmons, unsure if sea bass were in season, called the Department of Marine Fisheries and the Massachusetts Environmental Police, who told her that the fish were not, in fact, in season for recreational fishing until Saturday, May 21. Even if it had been the correct season, Baptista did not have a recreational saltwater license. The commercial season for the fish begins Aug. 1. Read the rest here 17:12

Florida Fish And Wildlife: 44 Illegal Spiny Lobster Tails Taken By Suspect, Charged With Poaching

One could call them the “J Team” of Officers James Johnson, Jeremy Foell, Jamie Richards and Jose Lopez. Foell and Richards inspected a commercial fishing vessel they saw pulling traps while they were on patrol in the FWC Interceptor with Johnson. During the resource inspection, officers discovered 44 wrung spiny lobster tails hidden behind hydraulic equipment on the fishing boat; 24 of the illegally wrung tails were undersized.  When they got to shore, Lopez interviewed a suspect who was then booked into a local jail for the numerous poaching violations. (Link) 08:53

Mandurah: men fined $8000 for interfering with crab pots “just having a look”.

Two Halls Head men have each been fined $8,000 for interfering with commercial crab pots. On a Thursday night on November 26 last year, a Fisheries and Marine officer saw two people in a small runabout travelling around the Peel-Harvey Estuary and Cox Bay. Aaron Edwin Pollard (32) and Andrew Michael Collyer (31) were ordered to each pay $8,000 in fines, plus court costs of $169.10, for illegally pulling four commercial crab pots in Cox Bay under the cover of darkness. A recorded interview was heard in Mandurah court last week, where the men admitted to Fisheries and Marine Officers that they pulled the pots with the intention of Read the rest here 08:23

Illegal oyster harvest, drugs lead to 2 arrests in St. Bernard

Louisiana wildlife and fisheries agents arrested 33-year-old Oliver Rudesill Jr. and 23-year-old Tracy Gallardo Jr. for several oyster, boating safety and drug violations after a boating safety inspection earlier this week. During the inspection, agents found 28 sacks of oysters and learned that Rudesill is on probation for prior oyster harvesting violations. Agents also found Gallardo in possession of oxycodone, suboxone and drug paraphernalia. Read the rest here 08:42

Virginia Marine Police arrest two accused of poaching thousands of protected fish

Marine police have had numerous complaints about poaching in the southern branch of the Elizabeth River over the last two weeks, according to Marine Police Officer Bill Thompson. Marine police had found many untended, illegal and hidden nets that had trapped and killed between 4,000 and 5,000 pounds of protected fish species in that waterway recently. Both Yuan Li of Chesapeake and Bi Chen of Norfolk have been charged with several Class 1 misdemeanors and there are several felony charges still pending,,, Video, Read the rest here 08:10

Antarctic toothfish poaching ships shrug off New Zealand navy

Staying hidden behind sea ice and large waves, sailors aboard a navy patrol boat from New Zealand sneaked up on three suspected poaching ships, then took photos and video of the fishermen hauling in prized fish in banned nets from the ocean near Antarctica. Seemingly caught red-handed, the crews of the rusting vessels just kept on fishing. Read the rest here 09:24

Harbor commissioner mulling plea offer in poaching, perjury case

The poaching and perjury case against Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District Commissioner Aaron Newman may end in a plea deal after attorneys said during a Tuesday trial confirmation hearing that an offer was in the works. He has been charged with six misdemeanor violations related to poaching allegations, as well as. Read the rest here 16:45

Oakland couple fined, sentenced to jail for poaching dozens of Dungeness crabs in Half Moon Bay

A pair of poachers was sentenced to jail time and fined more than $20,000 Wednesday for smuggling dozens of Dungeness crabs in hidden compartments on their boat off the coast off Half Moon Bay.  Read more here  10:03

Five Poaching Virginia Charter Fishing Boat Captains Sentenced for Lacey Act Violations

clip_image002_001October 28, 2013. Nolan L. Agner, the last of five Virginia Beach charter fishing boat captains convicted of poaching Atlantic striped bass was sentenced today in federal court in Norfolk, Va.  All five captains – including Agner, Jeffery S. Adams, Raymond Carroll Webb, David Dwayne Scott, and William W. “Duby” Lowery IV – were sentenced for violating the Lacey Act by selling illegally-harvested striped bass, the Justice Department announced. [email protected]  22:28

Kent Md. Poacher convicted of overfishing striped bass

According to a news release from the office of Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler, state Natural Resources Police began an investigation after receiving information that Pierce had been using fishing licenses that did not belong to him during the striped bass season in January and February of 2011. Striped bass regulations from 2011 allowed Pierce to catch the daily legal limit of 300 pounds per striped bass allocation. There also was a maximum permitted allotment for total catch per boat of 1,400 pounds per day. [email protected] 14:39

Maine brothers charged with poaching NH eels – caught netting baby eels in the Hampton Falls River and ran from police.

Hey Stu! Drop the bucket.

CONCORD, N.H. — New Hampshire Fish and Game officers have two brothers from Maine in  custody and two buckets of baby eels as evidence of what they say is  part of an international eel-poaching operation believed to be driven by  a worldwide shortage of eels. continued

Three from Maine charged with poaching elvers from NJ creek

Robert Royce, 65, of Hope, Maine, and Neal V. Kenney, III, 53, of Thomaston, Maine, were arrested while possessing more than three pounds of the juvenile eels, which translates to about 8,000 individual eels, the DEP said. Officers then found a truck with a tank holding another six pounds, or 16,000 eels. Conservation officers then arrested the driver, Dale Witham, 54, of Medomak, Maine. continue reading about the POACHERS!