NOAA fines Alaska fishing vessel
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Wednesday announced it imposed fines on a hired master, vessel owners and permit holders of Alaskan f/v Trident.
Fishermen aboard the Trident reported catches of halibut and sablefish as being taken from remote areas when they were actually harvested in areas regulated by individual fishing quotas closer to port.
The more than USD 18,000 (EUR 12,848) in penalties and USD 241,000 (EUR 172,000) worth of sanctions are for falsely reporting areas fished by the vessel on five trips during 2006 and 2007.
Tri Fish Limited Liability Corp. and the owners and permit holders of the Trident have agreed to pay USD 10,000 (EUR 7,138) for falsely reporting areas fished by their vessel. The settlement agreement also suspends vessel owner and permit holder Michael Lang’s Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands sablefish IFQ for the 2010 fishing season and vessel owner and permit holder Barry McKee’s Aleutian Islands sablefish IFQ for 2010.
McKee and Lang also are barred from hiring skippers to fish their IFQ shares for them next year. They will have to be on the boats when their share is fished.
“These violations affect not only the management of Alaska’s well-managed halibut and sablefish IFQ fisheries, they are also unfair to the fishermen who abide by the rules and fish in the correct areas,” said Ken Hansen, assistant special agent in charge of the Alaska division of NOAA’s Office of Law Enforcement (OLE).
The violations were detected and investigated by the Alaska division of the OLE. The charges were brought by NOAA’s Office of General Council.