Navy apprehends 28 persons engaged in illegal fishing

The Navy apprehended 28 persons along with their fishing gear for engaging in illegal fishing, during search operations conducted in the North Central, Eastern, Northern and Western Naval Commands in the past two weeks spanning from 30th September to 14th October 2020.

Accordingly, the North Central Naval Command, during two operations in the sea areas off Thewampiddi and Achchanakulam, held 07 persons along with 02 dinghies, 02 unauthorized fishing nets and several other fishing gear, for engaging in illegal fishing. Meanwhile, another person (01) has been nabbed for transferring over 18kg of sea cucumber without licence, in Urumalai area, Talaimannar.

In other operations, the Eastern Naval Command apprehended 12 persons and seized 03 dinghies and 10 unauthorized fishing nets in seas off Salpeyaru and Trincomalee as well as Kotuwamada in Batticaloa lagoon.

Further, the Northern Naval Command also held 04 persons harvesting sea cucumber in the seas off the Guru Nagar Jetty, without valid licence. Along with the suspects a dinghy, other fishing accessories and 100 illegally caught sea cucumbers were also seized by the Navy. Apart from that, the same naval command nabbed 02 more persons together with a canoe and a banned fishing net, for engaging in illegal fishing without valid fishing permit in seas off Ceynor Jetty, Karainagar.

In another operation, the Western Naval Command apprehended 02 persons who were catching fish in the Diyawanna Lake using an unauthorized fishing net. Along with the suspects a traditional boat, 12kg of illegally caught fish and several other fishing gear were also detained by the Navy.

The apprehended persons were identified as residents of Silawathura, Mulankavil, Mannar, Erakkandi, Nilaveli, Kinniya and Guru Nagar, Kayts and Rajagiriya from 19 to 57 years of age. Meanwhile, the accused together with dinghies, unauthorized nets and other fishing gear seized by the Navy were handed over to the Assistant Directors of Fisheries in Mannar, Trincomalee and Batticaloa as well as the Fisheries Inspector of Kuchchaveli, Guru Nagar and Kayts and National Aquaculture Development Authority, Battaramulla for onward investigations.