Coast Guard issues violation to Homer fishermen for catching halibut out of season

Homer boat was fishing for Pacific cod when Coast Guard patrol found halibut on board

The U.S. Coast Guard issued a violation last Thursday to the crew of a Homer commercial fishing boat for allegedly catching halibut out of season while fishing for Pacific cod.

In a press release on Tuesday, the Coast Guard said crew members on the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Chandeleur discovered eight halibut on the 48-foot F/V Currency about 12 miles west of Cape Barnabas near Kodiak Island. The Chandeleur’s boarding team seized the halibut and handed them over to a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration representative in Kodiak.

“Maritime law enforcement of Alaska’s fisheries protects both our nation’s living marine resources and the livelihoods of those who depend on them,” said Lt. Tim Cassel, commanding officer of Chandeleur, in the press release. “We’re out here to protect the lives of fishermen and other mariners, to help ensure commercial fishermen all adhere to the same standards, and to safeguard the longevity of our marine resources.”

The Chandeleur is a 110-foot Island Class patrol boat out of Valdez with the missions of ports and waterway security, national defense readiness, search and rescue, marine environmental protection and protection of living marine resources, according to the press release.

Coast Guard living marine resource officers are trained to enforce fishery laws at the North Pacific Regional Fisheries Training Center on Kodiak Island before conducting boardings in Alaska waters. The center provides boarding support for officers who enforce fisheries laws in the Bering Sea and Gulf of Alaska.

“Educating our students on the intricacies of commercial fishing laws prepares them to protect our oceans’ valuable resources and promotes a level playing field among the fishing fleets in the nation’s most significant fisheries stocks,” Lt. Cmdr. Greg Hersh, commanding officer of the training center, said in the press release.