FFA Prosecuting Illegal Fishing Vessels
FFA Assists Countries to Board and Prosecute Fishing Vessels
NUKU'ALOFA, TONGA, MONDAY 3 NOVEMBER 2008: The FFA
Su'a N.F. Tanielu opened the Prosecution and Dockside Boarding
Workshop in Tonga today. This workshop will assist local officers to
board and inspect fishing vessels for offences.
In Tonga this week,
fisheries officers, police and maritime navy at
the workshop will learn more about International law, National laws,
Regional and Sub-regional Fisheries Agreements, Fishing Vessel
Boarding & Evidence Collections and Court Procedures.
FFA has provided these workshops for Cook
Islands, Fiji, Federated
States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands Kiribati, Nauru, Palau, Papua
New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Tokelau, Tonga and
Tuvalu. In addition to fisheries and police or navy officers, crown
law office staff and public prosecutions staff, officers in related
roles such as immigration, customs and quarantine agencies have also
attended the workshops. A total of 380 participants from 13 FFA member
countries have participated since 2005.
Officers doing boarding,
inspection and evidence collection need an
increased understanding of how fishing vessels operate and changes to
international law and measures adopted by the Western and Central
Pacific Fisheries Commission, as well as their national laws, to do
their work effectively. FFA's assistance provides expertise and
training on the international legal instruments, regional agreements
and national law to give officers a broader understanding of their
work and its relation to prosecution of fishing vessels for offences.
The next workshop will be held in
Niue shortly. These workshops will
also be reviewed to examine possible improvements, including tailored
programs for members without access to patrol boats.