Her Majesty’s Bahamian Ship (HMBS) Madeira apprehended a Dominican fishing vessel for poaching in Bahamian waters on Sunday morning. After receiving information of 3 foreign vessels in the area of Guinchos Cay, HMBS Madeira, under the command of Senior Lieutenant William Sturrup was immediately dispatched to the area to investigate. A 70-foot steel hull Dominican Fishing Vessel ‘Ronnie’ was apprehended approximately 20 nautical miles south-east of Cay Lobos with 46 Dominican fishermen.
Further investigations resulted in the discovery of a large number of fishery products onboard. Two other Dominican Fishing Vessels that were in the vicinity fled the area into Cuban waters. This latest incident comes follows the apprehension of an American sailing yacht with 6 American nationals on Friday afternoon by the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park Warden with the support of Defence Force Marines assigned to the Park.
Prior to that, Defence Force patrol craft HMBS Durward Knowles apprehended 4 Dominican fishermen aboard a 50-ft Dominican fishing vessel for poaching on June 16 on the Great Bahama Bank. This arrest was the result of close collaboration with the Bahamian fishing community. These men have since been charged before the Nassau courts. The Royal Bahamas Defence Force continues to protect the territorial integrity of The Bahamas.