Fishing Vessel Found in Closed Florida Fishing Zone

Thursday, September 19, 2002
The Coast Guard Cutter Key Largo boarded a fishing boat Monday night, after observing it allegedly fishing inside the Tortugas Shrimp Sanctuary, a zone closed to shrimp trawling. The fishing vessel Miss Linda Darlene, homeport in Coden, Ala., was located by a Coast Guard helicopter and intercepted by the cutter Key Largo. The Key Largo’s boarding team reported an estimated 1,800 pounds of shrimp in the vessel’s hold. The 73-foot fishing vessel Miss Linda Darlene and the shrimp were transferred to agents from the National Marine Fisheries Service, who met the vessel at Bama Seafood on Stock Island in Key West, Fla. The evidence package for this seizure has been forwarded to NMFS, who will determine if a formal Notice of Violation will be issued. Fisheries stocks are a finite resource that are placed in jeopardy by illegal fishing , said Lt. Cmdr. David Cinalli, chief of fisheries enforcement for the Seventh Coast Guard district. The Tortugas shrimp sanctuary and other areas closed to fishing are essential to the prudent management of these fisheries. Vessels that breach these closed areas are cheating other fishermen and future generations out of a livelihood fishing and jeopardize this national resource for all of us, he added. The cutter Key Largo is a 110-ft. patrol boat home ported in Key West, Fla.

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