22nd December 2014: De-Register Thunder – Company calls for Australian Government support

David Carter, CEO of Austral Fisheries, today supported calls from Sea Shepherd for the Nigerian government to remove the known toothfish poaching boat, the Thunder, from its vessel registry.

The Thunder has had a purple notice issued against it by Interpol, for continued actions that undermine the sustainable management of toothfish fisheries in Antarctic waters.   This Purple Notice calls for responsible governments to avoid assistance to the boat and operators, including not providing licenses to fish for toothfish.

David said that Austral Fisheries have been at the forefront of work to eliminate Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fishing for toothfish over the past 18 years, and it was pleasing to see Sea Shepherd joining the effort.  International maritime law meant that boats who could get flags and licenses from States that do not care about sustainable fishing, pose a particular problem to eradicate from the high seas areas.  No IUU fishing for toothfish has taken place inside Australian waters since 2006.

The Thunder is one of the last remaining IUU toothfish boats known to be operating and, in that regard, the intervention to prevent it from IUU fishing is something Sea Shepherd can claim to be proud of.

David called on the Australian government to pursue all Diplomatic efforts to ask Nigerian authorities to remove the Thunder from their shipping registry, and to cancel any licenses that had been issued to the known poaching vessel.


For more information:

David Carter
CEO, Austral Fisheries
+61 (0)8 9217 0100 (GMT +8)