Australian Border Force boat. (Photo: Stock File)
Australian authorities detain 29 Vietnamese fishermen
Saturday, February 18, 2017, 03:50 (GMT + 9)
Twenty-nine Vietnamese fishermen were detained by local authorities for allegedly fishing sea cucumbers illegally off the Australian coast, at Saumarez Reef in Queensland.
The Vietnamese citizens were on two boats that were raided and authorities discovered they had sea cucumbers so they took the ships and crew to their headquarters.
Parks Australia's manager for marine parks compliance Scott Clemenz said that illegal fishing must end in order to protect the marine ecosystem in Australia.
The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) has partnered with Australia Border Force (ABF) for the detention of ships.
Peter Venslovas, AFMA's chief operating officer, issued a warning, " Foreign fishers seeking to take advantage and target our fish resources will be caught and run the risk of being prosecuted and having their boats confiscated and destroyed."
Last year, 10 Vietnamese vessels were detained by Australian authorities with 121 fishermen convicted of illegal fishing and more than 32,000 tonnes of sea cucumbers seized.