The Portuguese trawler Calvao in the Port of Montevideo (Uruguay) | Photo: Revista Puerto
The captured Portuguese trawler operates from Uruguay
Tuesday, May 05, 2020, 15:30 (GMT + 9)
The Calvao ship is based in Aviero, Portugal, but its "operational hideout" for illegal fishing is in the Uruguayan capital. He was captured by the Prefecture while working in Argentine waters at the height of Río Negro. He is being driven to Bahía Blanca.
The Calvao trawler, 61 meters long and with the Portuguese flag, owned by the Aveiro Fishing Company, was captured this Sunday in the middle of a fishing operation within 200 miles of the Argentine Exclusive Economic Zone.
The operation that ended with his arrest began at 07:54 on Sunday, May 3, when the crew of the Coast Guard GC-27 Prefect Fique detected the fishing vessel Calvao in illegal fishing tasks, with nets deployed.
Coast Guard GC-27 Prefect Fique (Photo: PNA)
As reported by the PNA, once the detention procedure began, the offending ship did not initially comply with the orders, continuing navigation "with its nets in the water in the direction of international waters", for which the Prefecture began the persecution. It is worth mentioning that the operation also had surface assistance from the ocean-going patrol ship ARA "Bouchard" of the Argentine Navy.
Subsequently, the Portuguese trawler lifted his fishing gear and after approximately four hours of pursuit, he stopped his march, allowing boarding by the Coast Guard Visiting Crew.
The offender is taken to the port of Bahía Blanca, escorted by the Coast Guard Fique and with Prefectural personnel on board. The boat was detected 199.75 nautical miles from the coast, in accordance with the provisions of the Baseline Law, at the height of the Rio Negro city of San Antonio Oeste.
For reasons of jurisdiction, the Federal Court of First Instance of the city of Viedma took charge of the episode, in charge of the Subrogant Federal Judge Dr. Hugo Horacio Greca; magistrate who will act based on the commission of the crime of resistance to authority for taking flight.
Meanwhile, the Subsecretariat of Fisheries of the Nation will carry out the administrative summary proceedings for the infraction of the Federal Fishing Regime, Law 24.922.
The offending fishing vessel has a seat port in Aviero, Portugal and an operations port in Montevideo. The port of the Uruguayan capital has become in recent decades one of the main recipients of illegal fishing, it works as an operational base, providing logistics and maintenance services to a fleet that devastates the resources of the South Atlantic.
Photo: Milko Schvartzman/Revista Puerto
"The Portuguese ship Calvao that the Prefecture has just captured already has a vast record," warns Milko Schvartzman, a specialist in Marine Conservation and member of the Circle of Environmental Policies.
Review that he was violated "in 2002 for falsifying catch report, fishing species subject to moratorium and exceeding the limits of accidental catch".
Regarding its operational history, it indicates that “it is a Portuguese ship that appeared in recent years on the map of the South Atlantic. The fleet of that country does not occupy even 1% of the total number of vessels that fish on Mile 201 and eventually on the Argentine Sea ”, he describes.
“Playa Pesmar I, captured in 2018 in Argentina, operates from Montevideo; the Oyang 77 captured in Argentina in 2019 operated from Montevideo at the time it was caught and continued to do so throughout the past year. Now the recently captured Portuguese Calvao also operates from Montevideo, ”says Schvartzman, accounting for the continental operating base that Uruguay provides to this fleet of recurring offenders.