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Nov 16, 1998

Two fishermen arrested for undersized lobster

Connoisseurs say the smaller the tail, the more delicate the taste. The law, however, says that when lobster tails fall below four ounces the fisherman may be eating dinner at Hattieville. This afternoon, fisheries officers arrested two embarrassed anglers after their vessel was searched and a total of one hundred and forty five illegal lobster tails were discovered. According to fisheries inspector Troy Garcia, both men have been charged with the possession of undersized lobster.

Troy Garcia, Fisheries Inspector

“Well, a boat was deployed on a routine maritime enforcement operation in the Belize harbor area, where the officers, fisheries officer, Natalie Thomas came across this fishing boat occupied by the two defendants: Mr. Percy Flowers and Balbino Fermin. Their vessel was stop, boarded and searched where Ms. Thomas encountered a white bag containing a quantity of crayfish tails that seem to be undersized. Hence, both men were arrested and brought to the Fisheries Department where they were asked to witness the counting and the weighing of the crayfish to determine those that are undersized and those that pass our legal size.”

Garcia says the catch will be kept on ice at the Fisheries Department until the case against Flowers and Fermin is finished. The lobster tails will then be given away to charitable organizations. The unimpeded killing of juvenile lobsters before they have a chance to reproduce would mean that eventually Belize’s multimillion dollar fishing industry would be destroyed.

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