Kodiak Fisherman Sentenced to Prison and fined $1M for Lacey Act violation

According to court documents, James Aaron Stevens, 47, an experienced commercial fisherman, vessel owner and captain, pled guilty in November 2020 to falsely labeling fish in violation of the Lacey Act. Stevens, owner and operator of F/V Alaskan Star and F/V Southern Seas, falsely reported where he harvested 903,208 pounds of individual fishing quota (IFQ) halibut and sablefish. Stevens knowingly falsified numerous documents, IFQ landing reports, Alaska Department of Fish and Game fish tickets, and fishing logbooks, to show that he harvested fish in locations and regulatory areas where he did not fish and omitted areas where he actually fished. Stevens committed this offense over the course of 26 fishing trips spanning four IFQ fishing seasons (2014-2017).  Taken together, the halibut and sablefish that Stevens falsely reported had an approximate dock value of $4,522,210 and market value of $13,566,630. Stevens sold the falsely labeled fish caught during these trips, which were, or were intended to be, transported in interstate and foreign commerce. >click to read< 19:08

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