Patagonian toothfish is a species of cod icefish that is closely related to Antarctic Toothfish. In the US, toothfish is marketed as Chilean Sea Bass. Large toothfish can weigh up to 100 kilograms, grow up to 2.3 meters long (7.5 feet), and live up to 50 years. The Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) manages toothfish fishing. This fish is highly desirable and a prime target for illegal poaching.
The Hai Lung has been operating for many years under various aliases. Some if the vessels’s pseudonyms include the “Kily”, “Yele” “Tropic” “Ray” and “Isla Graciosa.” When boarded, the captain presented falsified registration documents to the Coast Guard. This paperwork alleged that the ship was flagged as an Indonesian fishing vessel. However, the Indonesian Maritime Affairs Ministry has no record of the ship. The Hai Lung is a vessel “without nationality” and therefore subject to seizure anywhere on the High Seas. (photo – Sea Shepherd)
The actual owner of the F/V Hai Lung-Yele-Isla Graciosa is Argibay Perez of Spain. Perez is a notorious poacher and member of the “Galician Mafia.” He has been previously convicted of crimes in Australia and La Reunion. A second ship the F/V Viking sunk by the Indonesia Navy several years ago was also linked to Perez. Read more in EcoWatch. (photo – Sea Shepherd)
Chalk up another one for Sea Shepherd!
In Operation Sola Stella, Sea Shepherd coordinates with the Liberian Navy to track illegal fishing boats. Sea Shepherd provides a patrol boat and crew which operates under the guidance of the Liberian Ministry of Defense. To date, eleven vessels have been seized in Liberian waters, for illegal and unregulated fishing. Sea Shepherd is also working with the governments of Gabon and Tanzania.
Operation Sola Stella continues Sea Shepherd’s Global commitment to work with the law enforcement agencies of national governments to “defend, conserve and protect our oceans.”
Recently we reported on Sea Shepherd’s success with tracking a Chinese fleet illegally fishing for sharks in the protected waters of the Galapagos National Marine Park. Read more in our article: Sea Shepherd Catches Illegal Chinese Shark Fishing
By Robert Frerck, Blue Ocean Network
See Related Blue Ocean Posts on Shark Preservation:
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