Weekly Highlights - September 24, 2018
Read about this week's enforcement actions from around the country.
- A Special Agent and Enforcement Officer completed a 7.5-hour patrol. Five vessels were boarded and several strings of gear were hauled. Six state violations were documented and forwarded to the Alaska Wildlife Troopers. One federal violation was documented involving a charter operator fishing for halibut without an original Charter Halibut Permit (CHP) onboard the vessel. Follow-up interviews led to a group of charter vessels have been fishing all year without valid CHPs onboard their vessels. Additionally, one federal violation was documented for an IFQ fisherman using unmarked or improperly marked buoys.
- A Special Agent followed-up on an ammonia release for EPA-CID that took place on a fishing vessel. It appeared the release was under the EPA reportable amount (more than 100 pounds). As a result of the ammonia release, the captain received third-degree burns and was medevacked from Dutch Harbor.
- An Enforcement Officer accompanied the Coast Guard in Cordova on an air patrol of Prince William Sound targeting Marine Mammal Protection Act violations.
- A Special Agent received a complaint from a Metlakatla Indian Community Officer regarding a vessel operator illegally sport fishing within the Annette Island Reserve. The officer requested assistance in contacting and providing compliance assistance to the subject regarding the AIR regulations and the Lacey Act.
- A Special Agent provided compliance assistance to a vessel owner/operator for an observer complaint. The owner/operator was educated about the requirements to answer end-of-trip gear questions.
- A Special Agent monitored the offload of a giant Bluefin tuna and then investigated to ensure the fish was reported as required. The dealer and permit owner both timely reported the catch and purchase.
- An Enforcement Officer received four cases from FL FWC and issued two $500 summary settlements for vessels not having the proper federal charter/headboat permits, a $300 summary settlement for possessing two fish during a closed season, and a $525 summary settlement for a subject spearfishing in a prohibited area and being in possession of hogfish out of season. The Officer provided compliance assistance in other FWC cases for an undersized vermillion snapper and undersized dolphin.
- An Enforcement Officer monitored commercial offloads from an IFQ and HMS vessel. No violations were documented during the offloads.
- An Enforcement Officer issued a $350 summary settlement for a vessel boarded and found in possession of two undersized vermilion snapper, one undersized black sea bass, and one undersized mutton snapper.
- An Enforcement Officer conducted a patrol of local federal dealers and commercial fishing docks in the Jacksonville area. The Officer received information from local captains of out of state trawlers working in the area and trawling inside of a mile and passed the information to FL FWC. The Officer also observed the offload of a South Atlantic snapper/grouper commercial vessel with no violations detected.
- An Enforcement Officer conducted a joint at-sea patrol with the USCG in Freeport, TX. Officers boarded including two shrimp vessels and one recreational vessel. Compliance assistance was provided to one shrimp vessel for failing to possess his federal shrimp permit on board. No other violations were documented.