Vietnamese trawler detained for illegal fishing in Thai waters

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

A Vietnamese trawler with four crewmen was detained yesterday for illegally fishing in Thai territorial waters, according to the Thai navy. The incident took place south of Koh Kra, yesterday, July 4, where the Second Naval Area Command, led by deputy commander Phichit Srirungruang, ordered the HTMS Sattahip to conduct a patrol following intelligence reports of unauthorised fishing activities.

The Thai Maritime Enforcement Command Centre collaborated with the navy to locate and apprehend the vessel, which was detected 60 nautical miles from the nearest buoy. The crew members attempted to evade detection but were ultimately unsuccessful.

Upon their capture, the boat and its crew were transported to Songkhla Naval Base for legal processing. The crewmen underwent questioning with the help of an interpreter before being handed over to local police.

Phichit confirmed that the Vietnamese crew would face charges for operating an unmarked fishing vessel in Thai waters, engaging in commercial fishing without a licence, and operating a fishing vessel without authorisation.

The Second Naval Area Command has intensified its efforts to prevent foreign fishing boats from encroaching into Thai waters. Since October 2023, the command has detained eight vessels, capturing a total of 13 boats and 65 crew members. This increased vigilance follows orders to bolster maritime security and protect Thailand’s territorial waters.

“It is crucial to uphold the integrity of our maritime boundaries and ensure that all fishing activities within Thai waters are properly regulated.”

The apprehension of the Vietnamese trawler underscores ongoing efforts by Thai police to combat illegal fishing and protect marine resources. These measures are part of broader efforts to maintain sustainable fishing practices and safeguard the livelihoods of local fishermen.

Officials posed with the four Vietnamese crewmen in Nakhon Si Thammarat, marking the latest success in their campaign against illegal fishing, reported Bangkok Post.

In related news, an alarming incident unfolded recently at a Phuket beach, involving a man allegedly threatening two fishermen with a machete while demanding a beach fee. Despite having evidence, the local police dismissed the complaint, deeming it a mere story.

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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