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Busted Bluefin illegal sale

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In October of 2021, Officers assigned to the Massachusetts Environmental Police Offshore Patrol Boats initiated an investigation into the illegal sale of Blue Fin Tuna, a federally regulated highly migratory species. Through their investigation, officers discovered that several blue fin tuna had been sold illegally to a Gloucester fish market. Criminal charges were taken out against the Captain of the vessel in Gloucester District Court. In late November 2022, the Captain signed a plea deal with the Commonwealth and paid $13,000 in fines for the illegal sale of the fish.
It is illegal for an individual without a commercial permit issued through the Department of Marine Fisheries to sell any fish that they catch; additionally, it is illegal for a fish house to purchase fish from an unpermitted individual. These requirements assist the Division of Marine Fisheries and NOAA to regulate catch quotas that are in place to ensure the long term survivability of fish species.

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28 mins ago, gray gables said:

no name of the boat or said individual?

None posted on EPO facebook

 

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I'd bet it's a well-known charterboat whose captain decided that he'd rather plead guilty and pay the fine than risk being ostracized and abandoned by sport anglers. Having his name and boat kept anonymous is probably part of the informal plea bargaining, lawyer to lawyer. "My guy will plead and pay the fine, but you have to promise to not identify him on the website."  "Deal."

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… and the fish market? Lack of demand and financial gain would lower the incentive to catch and keep to sell.

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20 hours ago, jason colby said:

It wasn't me!

U operate outta that area?  I was up last summer, shoulda booked a trip. Maybe next year. 

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2 hours ago, PSeggs said:

U operate outta that area?  I was up last summer, shoulda booked a trip. Maybe next year. 

Nah! I'm in Quincy early on and then I go to Westport (Ma.). I have not fished for tuna since 1983 or so. I found that I was taking it far too seriously and because it was impossible to be secretive (in the wide open areas you can't "hide" like with striper fishing) and in a fleet of 300 boats I felt that everyone there wanted "my fish". I would be dead from ruptured blood vessels or in jail for mass murder. Either way I would not be here telling the tale.....

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42 mins ago, jason colby said:

Nah! I'm in Quincy early on and then I go to Westport (Ma.). I have not fished for tuna since 1983 or so. I found that I was taking it far too seriously and because it was impossible to be secretive (in the wide open areas you can't "hide" like with striper fishing) and in a fleet of 300 boats I felt that everyone there wanted "my fish". I would be dead from ruptured blood vessels or in jail for mass murder. Either way I would not be here telling the tale.....

Yeah. That's not fun at all.  I fish to relax. I'm happy with alot less trophy. 

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BTW- My 2022 Recap will be sent out to my email list in a few days from now so (anyone interested) send me a PM with your email address to get that....

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Posted (edited)

On 12/7/2022 at 8:20 PM, BrianBM said:

I'd bet it's a well-known charterboat whose captain decided that he'd rather plead guilty and pay the fine than risk being ostracized and abandoned by sport anglers. Having his name and boat kept anonymous is probably part of the informal plea bargaining, lawyer to lawyer. "My guy will plead and pay the fine, but you have to promise to not identify him on the website."  "Deal."

You can search district court records for the month of November 2022, and only one commercial fishing violation (MGL C 130 Section 80) shows up out of 48 cases.  It lists the defendant’s name, and a simple google search results in a fair amount of identifying info on that person.

 

I am not out to doxx anyone, but the info is there if you want to find it.

Edited by Jonesy02719
Wrong regulation cited

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I don't, really. I can pass. The other charterboat captains in his area will know who he is, but there'll be a fair bit of sympathy for him.

 

I have the idea that people who work the water for a living often have a bit of pirate in them. Ho ho ho.

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4 hours ago, BrianBM said:

 

 

I have the idea that people who work the water for a living often have a bit of pirate in them. Ho ho ho.

Charter boat captains/crews, small commercial (rod and reel) boats/crew and much more so with any size dragger.

Worse even are the dealers that buy the illegal harvests because as long as there is a buyer (for "ill gotten goods"), there will be a seller....

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On 12/7/2022 at 8:20 PM, BrianBM said:

I'd bet it's a well-known charterboat whose captain decided that he'd rather plead guilty and pay the fine than risk being ostracized and abandoned by sport anglers. Having his name and boat kept anonymous is probably part of the informal plea bargaining, lawyer to lawyer. "My guy will plead and pay the fine, but you have to promise to not identify him on the website."  "Deal."

I don't think that can take place. There might be a reason to seal the court documents like if a juvenile was involved but I think sealing Court procedings is very rare. I could be wrong.

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Oh, I'm sure the court documents aren't sealed. All the captain wanted and needed was that the State not name him or his boat on the website.

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