Dominican poachers charged

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Four Dominican fishermen were charged before the courts on Friday, after being apprehended by the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) in waters south of Great Inagua for poaching.

In Friday’s hearing, Oneil Garcia, Ediberto Awduzar, Franklyn Carbera, and Jose Gomez, all appeared before Magistrate McKinney in court number one, and were charged with ‘illegal foreign fishing’ within the exclusive fishery zone.

All of the Dominicans pleaded guilty and were subsequently convicted and fined $10,000 each or six months in jail.

A US Coast Guard Operations Turks and Caicos (OPBAT) helicopter spotted a suspicious vessel south of Inagua on December 22, 2018. The Defence Force was informed and P-128, under the command of Petty Officer Edison Rolle, subsequently apprehended the 20-foot vessel with four Dominicans on board.

During the month of December alone, a total of 18 Dominican fishermen have been apprehended for fisheries violations in Bahamian waters.

So far this year, the RBDF has apprehended a total of 190 Dominican poachers, four Dominican fishing vessels and five small go-fast type boats with more than 100,000 pounds of fisheries products.