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Costa Ricans Detained In Ecuador, Mexico

August 11, 2006

Coast Guard officials in Ecuador and Mexico have detained thirty-five Costa Rican fishermen in recent weeks.

Five boats manned by 25 Tico fishermen were detained in Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands region Aug. 2 for reportedly navigating without the permits required by that country’s Maritime Police Code, according to a statement from the Costa Rican Foreign Ministry. The fishermen, who are in good health and have been able to communicate with their families in Costa Rica by radio, are being held on their boats at Isla Isabela.

Costa Rican Consul Rafael Sáenz, who lives in Guayaquil, has been assisting the fishermen as they await more information from Ecuadoran authorities about their legal situation, the statement said.

In other news, 10 fishermen aboard the Gedeón I detained July 8 by Mexican authorities are being held at the Iztapalapa Immigration Station in Mexico City.

Wire service ACAN-EFE reported the Gedeón crew was detained for allegedly fishing in Mexican waters without a permit.

Costa Rican Consul Anabella Castro said the group would be allowed to leave as soon as the legal department of Mexico’s National Immigration Institute (INM) grants permission, but an Immigration official told ACAN-EFE the Federal Prosecutor for Environmental Protection might bring charges against the fishermen.

 

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