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Crew at work on one of the arrested trawlers

Phuket Trawlers, Crews Held for Illegal Fishing off Patong

Saturday, July 2, 2011
PHUKET: Two Phuket trawlers have been seized and their crews arrested for fishing too close to the Phuket coast.

Owners, captains and crew now face fines of up to 20,000 baht and jail terms of up to five years.

Fishing vessels Bamrong Thai Nawa 18 and 19 were boarded by officials on a Phuket Marine Biological Centre boat just two kilometres off Patong overnight on July 1.

Held and charged were two Thais and nine Burmese on board, all arrested for fishing within the three-kilometre limit.

The Director of Marine Natural Resources, Paitoon Planchaiyabhum, said the tip-off that the Phuket-based vessels were fishing too close to shore came from another trawler.

''We sometimes have problems making raids because all the trawler fishermen know what the Marine Biological Centre vessel looks like,'' Khun Paitoon said.

''These two trawlers, though, have broken the law many times.''

He said the last arrest of trawler crew off Phuket had been about two years ago.

Comments

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Wow. I can honestly say I have never heard of fishing boats being seized before... I always though the owners and power players in the fishing industry were "too big". Hope someone can go check at the Similan Islands too!

Posted by Jamie on July 2, 2011 17:46

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SUPER GOOD JOB Khun Paitoon...
I, TDA Diving Association (Thailand) and all divers, Thais or foreigners alike applaud your action and hope more arrests of law-breakers for illegal fishing will intensify in order to protect Thailand natural assets as coral reefs, marine life and Marine National Parks.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on July 3, 2011 09:31


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