Higher Fine And Jail Time For Poachers

The Bahamas needs tougher laws against poaching. Operators of foreign vessels caught poaching in Bahamian waters should receive fines as high as $250,000 and/or 25 years imprisonment – this would act as a strong deterrent to the illegal activity, said the Minister of Agriculture, Marine Resources and Local Government V. Alfred Gray.

The fine for poachers does not exceed $5,000 under the current law.

Last week, a Bahamian delegation held discussions with the Dominican Republic government in Santo Domingo over Dominican fishermen poaching in Bahamian waters and future commerce opportunities.

The Dominican minister responsible proposed that all licensed fishing vessels be equipped with devices to track and monitor their activities.

While it is unclear as to the dollar value the country loses to poaching annually, officials have estimated that the figure stands in the multimillions annually.