Two Vietnamese boats seized for encroachment
BINTULU: Two fishing boats from Vietnam with 22 crew members were seized by the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) on Friday last week during Ops Permai 1/06 for encroaching into Malaysian waters.
MMEA Bintulu maritime enforcement chief commander Sazali Mohamad said about two tonnes of marine products were found on the fishing boats.
“This is the tenth case of intrusion by foreign fishermen this year,” he said.
From preliminary investigations, he said, the skippers and crew members of the boats did not have identification documents.
According to him, patrol vessel KM Setia detected two suspicious trawling boats about 190 nautical miles from Tanjung Kidurong while conducting patrol in the sea.
Upon inspection of the first boat, identified as BV9559 TS, at about 12 midnight, he said they found it had 18 Vietnamese crew members.
And about two nautical miles from where they detained the first boat, he said another boat bearing registration number BV 9315 TS was detained and found to be carrying four crew members, also from Vietnam.
All the boats were then towed to the MMEA Vessel Detention Centre for further investigation under Section 15 (1) (a) of the Fisheries Act, 1985.
If convicted, the skipper would be liable to a fine not exceeding RM1 million while the crew members face a fine not exceeding RM100,000 or imprisonment of not less than three to six months.