CENTRAL Visayas police officers on Saturday launched simultaneous operations against violators of the fisheries law in Cebu islands resulting in the arrest of 11 illegal fishermen and the confiscation of firearms, gears and a fishing vessel being used to illegally catch fish in the area, Police Regional Office 7 director Chief Superintendent Debold M. Sinas said yesterday.
Sinas said PRO7 operatives, in coordination with the Philippine Coast Guard and the Philippine Navy, confiscated a pump boat and arrested the suspects.
Five of the suspects were arrested in the raid while three others were caught in seaborne patrols.
Sinas said also seized in the raids were three firearms and fishing equipment including a compressor, four rolls of compressor hoe, four spare gears, four goggles and four underwater flashlights.
The police operations targeted illegal fishing in Bantayan and Camotes Islands in Cebu province under the PRO7’s “Oplan: Alon.”
Also being targeted by the operations are illegal fishermen in the municipalities of Madridejos, Bantayan, Sta. Fe, San Remegio, Poro, Daanbantayan, Medellin, San Francisco, Tudela and Pilar.
“We are doing this to account for dynamites and improvised explosives being used in illegal fishing and at the same time arrest foreigners using unauthorized fish nets in the target areas,” Sinas told the Journal Group.
Sinas said “Oplan: Alon” was conceptualized in the wake of reports of rampant illegal fishing in the target areas that threaten the livelihood of local residents and damage the aquatic environment.