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HomeTopicsCrimeCosta Rican Coast Guard captures boat with 153 illegal shark fins

Costa Rican Coast Guard captures boat with 153 illegal shark fins

At least 40 sharks were killed by an illegal shark-finning boat detained off the shores of Golfito in Costa Rica’s South Pacific. The boat was discovered during a two-day Coast Guard operation on Sunday and Monday.

Shark finning – where fishermen catch sharks, cut off their fins and throw them overboard to die – was outlawed in Costa Rica in 2012 due to the devastating impact it has had on shark populations. The practice has grown in popularity parallel to the rise of shark-fin soup as a delicacy in Asia. Finners throw the carcasses overboard to save room in the hulls, killing more sharks. Depending on the animal’s size, a fisherman can get between four and six fins per shark.

The Coast Guard seized 153 fins from a sack on the boat’s deck, and arrested the boat’s captain, who has the last names Chávez Chavarría. In the same operation, officials confiscated 700 meters of trammel nets – illegal in some Costa Rican waters – and intercepted a boat using live bait.

Recommended: Could a shark-finning trial restore loophole in Costa Rica law?


More photos from the Public Security Ministry


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