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Man rides in on jet ski, fires shots as hundreds raid his illegal shellfish farm – VIDEO

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PHOTO: Khaosod

Like a scene in an action movie, a man rode in on his jet ski, firing a gun in the air as around 300 other fisherman raided his illegal shellfish farm off the Phunphin coast in Surat Thani. Apparently fishermen have been at ‘Cockle Wars’ for a while, with some claiming ownership to parts of the Gulf of Thailand near the Phunphin coast. Legally, they don’t have that authority.

29 year old Santi Nuansaen, who shot his pistol at the raiders yesterday, had spent 2.2 million baht on cockles to invest in his breeding farm. Police charged him with discharging a firearm in a public place. Nuansaen also filed a complaint against the intruders.

It’s illegal to run private farms in public waters, but much of the time fishermen simply get away with it. Many fishermen build raised huts in the sea to keep watch and bamboo fences around the the cockle breeding farms to keep people out. There’s 1,000 of the these huts in Surat Thani, 80 of them in Phunphin. The Surat Thani governor says the sea around 5 kilometers off the coast is public, adding that small-scale fishermen can catch cockles.

The Royal Thai Navy plans to crack down on the illegal cockle farms by removing the huts and fences, but some fishermen are asking for time before they’re kicked out as they’ve invested a lot of money in the ‘illegal’ businesses.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post 

Posted by Santi Nualsen on Tuesday, June 9, 2020

 

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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