Two Plead Guilty to Illegal Halibut Fishing

Thursday, January 17 2013

Two boats that regularly fish out of Unalaska were prosecuted in 2012 for illegal halibut fishing, as fisheries blogger Wesley Loy first reported.

The skippers of the F/V WonderWorker and the P/V Lady Gudny both pleaded guilty to Lacey Act violations earlier this year for harvesting halibut without the proper permits. According to plea documents, Nikolai Yakunin and Gisli Kristjansson worked together to catch and process 2,000 round pounds of halibut from areas near Atka in 2009 without having purchased individual fishing quota. The total value of the fish was estimated at $4,800. For the misdemeanor violation, the two were required to pay just over $5,000 in fines, and were placed on three and two years of probation, respectively.

Correction: In the original version of this story, we mistakenly reported that Kristjan Laxfoss was the skipper of the Lady Gudny. That is incorrect. Gisli Kristjansson was the skipper of the vessel.

DC on Saturday, January 19 2013:

I would like to know if they were actually illegaly fishing or was this by-catch or one of the other rediculous catch 22 laws stemming from State Trooper, overzelous Enforcement?

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