Suspected illegal fishing detected off Darwin
An Indonesian fishing vessel has been apprehended northeast of Darwin in Australia’s Northern Territory, for suspected illegal fishing in the country’s waters.
On 3 November 2019, Maritime Border Command (MBC), a multi-agency taskforce within the Australian Border Force (ABF), detected the vessel approximately two nautical miles inside Australia’s Exclusive Economic Zone. ABF cutter Cape Jervis pursued and apprehended the vessel under the command of MBC, as part of a joint operation by MBC and the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA).
In a search of the vessel, ABF officers located five crew on board with a suspected illegal catch of 16 shark skins, 63 fresh shark fins and 60 kg of shark flesh.
AFMA’s general manager of fisheries operations, Peter Venslovas, said detecting and deterring illegal foreign fishers is a top priority for Australian authorities. “AFMA and partner agencies work around the clock to monitor and protect Australia’s premium marine environment so the Australian community can enjoy this natural resource for generations to come,” he said.
Commander MBC, Rear Admiral Lee Goddard, said that the ABF is vigilant when it comes to keeping Australian waters secure. “The ABF, through MBC, works closely with partner agencies to detect and intercept illegal fishing vessels,” he said. “Anyone who attempts this type of illegal behaviour will be caught and prosecuted.”
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