20 Vietnamese poachers arrested in southern Palawan

Rappler.com
Local residents alerted Navy officials about the suspicious Vietamese fishing vessel

PUERTO PRINCESA CITY, Philippines – A naval vessel intercepted on Thursday, April 12, a Vietnamese vessel with 20 fishermen aboard.

They were caught poaching in the seas of Balabac in Southern Palawan, the Naval Forces West (Navforwest) said.

The Vietnamese boat was intercepted by BRP Emilio Jacinto (PS35) some 9.5 nautical miles southwest of Maratinez Point in Balabac. It was reportedly on its way to meet up with another fishing vessel to load illegally caught live sea turtles.

Local residents alerted Navy officers when they spotted a suspicious green motorlaunch seen transferring live sea turtles to another vessel spotted in Hasa-hasa Shoal. Navforwest spokesman Lt Noel Cadigal said the arrest was promptly made.

Live turtles in the possession of the Vietnamese fishermen were confiscated along with fishing gear used to catch the live turtles. The turtles are believed to be banned species.

Cadigal said the naval vessel, commanded by Lt Cmdr Ronnie S Paba, sailed for Puerto Princesa City Thursday noon accompanied by another naval boat, the BRP Ismael Lomibao. – Rappler.com

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