Three days after launching Operation Siracusa, Sea Shepherd Global’s first campaign in Italy, Sea Shepherd has halted a second poaching operation while patrolling the Marine Reserve of the Parco del Plemmirio in cooperation with local authorities.
The Guardia di Finanza, the Italian Financial Police, intervened and seized 50 kilograms of live sea urchins — approximately 500 animals. It is forbidden year-round throughout the entire marine reserve to catch sea urchins and to fish underwater. An aggravating circumstance in this case is represented by the fact that the poaching activities took place during the preservation period.
The sea urchins were immediately released back into the sea, still alive. The poachers’ equipment was also confiscated and they were sentenced to paying a fine of € 6.000,00 (around $8,000 USD) for the illegal capture, compounded by the other breachings of the law for which they were responsible.
“Just three days into the campaign, Sea Shepherd has already blocked two poaching operations in the Parco del Plemmirio. The success of this anti-poaching campaign is made possible by the passion of our volunteers and by the excellent cooperation with the Guardia di Finanza, aimed at protecting marine wildlife in a protected reserve,” said Captain Peter Hammarstedt.