Bahamas, August 4, 2017 – Nassau – A Dominican Naval vessel was in country on Thursday, in The Bahamas to pick up 50 fishermen who were charged and sentenced for poaching in Bahamian waters last year November. The Royal Bahamas Defense Force reports that the two Dominican vessels, Sheyla and Johnniel, were caught with approximately 68,000 pounds of fish and crawfish aboard.
Altogether, 51 Dominicans were arrested. 50 of the poachers were subsequently charged with illegal fishing and sentenced to 6 months in prison or a fine of $20,000 each. However, the captain of one of the vessels was charged with endangering a vessel and subsequently sentenced to 16 months in prison because he rammed a defense force boat in a failed attempt to escape.
The Captain, Victor Diaz, remains locked up until 2018 for his crimes. Diaz pled guilty to an additional charge of eight counts of causing the safety of HMBS Madeira to be endangered with intent to cause danger or harm; and one count of Damage. The Dominican naval vessel was escorted in and out of Bahamian waters by a Defence Force patrol craft.