By Betheena Kae Unite
Exactly 46 fishermen aboard two fishing boats were rounded up in a recent illegal fishing crackdown in Cavite, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said Friday.
The fishermen were caught fishing off Puerto Azul, Ternate, Cavite using an illegal fishing method called “Danish Seine” or locally known as “hulbot-hulbot”.
According to the Coast Guard, “Danish Seine” is a fishing method often used in commercial fishing which is strictly banned in the Philippine waters because of its tendency to destroy and damage the coral reefs, sea grass beds, and other marine life habitats pursuant to Section 92 of Republic Act 8550 (The Fisheries Code of the Philippines).
The fishermen were aboard two “Kat-Kat-R” and “Elley P,” which were reported to authorities for allegedly conducting the illegal fishing method on Monday. Teams from the Coast Guard Operations Force, Field Station National Capital Region Central Luzon and Coast Guard Substation Naic responded to the area, resulting in their arrest.
Around 50 basins of fishes were confiscated and were later turned over to the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR).
Both boat operators will be charged for violating the fisheries code and PCG law for unauthorized fishing; obstruction to Fishery Law Enforcement Officer; use of unlicensed gear; employing unlicensed fisher folks; ban on methods and gear destructive to coral reefs and other marine habitats; failure to accomplish Masters Declaration of Safe Departure; and leaving port without PCG clearance.
Last week, a total of 62 fishermen aboard seven fishing vessels were also apprehended for illegal fishing in Cavite, Caballo Island, Bataan and Manila during an eight-day illegal fishing crackdown.