Coast Guard interdicts lancha crew illegally fishing in U.S.

Coast Guard law enforcement crews detected and interdicted a Mexican lancha boat-crew engaged in illegal fishing in federal waters Oct. 10, 2017 off southern Texas. The preservation of marine resources is one of the Coast Guard's missions that is frequently enforced the the waters of southern Texas.

Coast Guard law enforcement crews detected and interdicted a Mexican lancha boat-crew engaged in illegal fishing in federal waters Oct. 10, 2017 off southern Texas.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Coast Guard law enforcement crews detected and interdicted a Mexican lancha boatcrew engaged in illegally fishing in federal waters Wednesday evening off southern Texas.

Coast Guard crews stopped one lancha with a total of four Mexican fishermen engaged in illegal fishing. The lancha, with fishing gear onboard, was seized. The Mexican fishermen were detained and transferred to border enforcement agents for processing.

“The lancha crews are continuing to poach red snapper and other fish in the Gulf of Mexico,” said Cmdr. Keith Pierre, the chief of response at Coast Guard Sector/Air Station Corpus Christi

“These actions have negative impacts on both the U.S. economy and environment. Therefore, we will continue to uphold and enforce the laws along the U.S./Mexico maritime boundary line and protect our sovereignty.”

A lancha is a Mexican fishing boat that is approximately 20-30 feet long with a slender profile, typically has one outboard motor, is capable of traveling at speeds exceeding 30 mph, and is frequently used to fish illegally in the United States’ Exclusive Economic Zone near the U.S./Mexico border in the Gulf of Mexico.

Coast Guard Sector/Air Station Corpus Christi has detected seven lanchas, three of which were interdicted, that were north of the U.S./Mexico Maritime Border since Oct. 1, 2017.

If you witness suspicious activity or illegal fishing in state waters (out to 9 miles offshore), please contact the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s “Operation Game Thief” at 1-800-792-GAME (4263). For all suspicious activity or illegal fishing occurring in federal waters (out to 200 miles offshore), please contact the U.S. Coast Guard at 361-939-0450.

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