ILOILO — Three fishermen from Barangay Buenavista in the coastal town of Carles were charged of dynamite fishing by Iloilo Provincial Bantay Dagat Task Force led by PO3 Philip Gañoso.
Docketed as criminal case number 3979, the complaint for violation of Paragraph 1 and 4 of Section 88 of Republic Act 8500 otherwise known as The Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998 has been filed against them before the 3rd Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Balasan.
Jay-ar Bensorto, 27, Jerald Montibon, 31, and Mario Dabasol, 52, were onboard motorboat “Mokong” when the taskforce intercepted them 3.9-kilometers from the coast of Naburot Island in Carles on Monday.
Authorities recovered from their possession two boxes of fish that were caught using explosives as confirmed by a laboratory test.
Their motorboat, including their engine, air compressor, air tank, shafting, propeller, rudder, fish finder and other fishing paraphernalia, were seized and submitted as evidences by the task force.
Section 88 of Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998 prohibits any person to catch fish using electricity, explosives, noxious or poisonous substance such as sodium cyanide which can kill, stupefy, disable or render unconscious any fishery species unless it is for research purposes only.
The law provides further that the use of these substances should be in accordance with accepted scientific practices and could not cause adverse environmental impact in neighboring waters and grounds.
If illegal fishing continues, a person possessing explosive, noxious or poisonous substances or electrofishing devices may suffer an imprisonment ranging from six months to two years.
Actual use of these unlawful devices, on the other hand, is punishable by imprisonment ranging from five years to ten years without prejudice to the filing of separate criminal cases when the use of the same result to physical injury or loss of human life.
Moreover, selling of illegally caught fisheries species shall be punished by imprisonment ranging from six months to two years. (Jezza A. Nepomoceno/Capitol News)